Attitudes toward and perceptions of divorce

TR Number
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Virginia Polytechnic Institute

This research was designed to investigate attitudes toward and perceptions of divorce; more specifically, the investigator analyzed the data by total scores and four sub-scale scores measuring

  1. General attitudes toward divorce as an institution.
  2. Attitudes toward people who are divorced.
  3. Perceptions of the effects of divorce on children.
  4. Perceptions of one's friendship role in a divorce situation.

Two-hundred and eleven usable four page anonymous questionnaires, developed by the investigator, were completed by single undergraduate students attending the Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg, Virginia, during the Spring quarter, 1969. The total scores and the four sub- scale scores were analyzed by sex, socio-economic status, residence, and exposure to divorce.

Females were found to be more liberal in their perceptions of the effects of divorce on children at the .02 level of confidence. Respondents with exposure to divorce were found to be significantly more liberal at the .05 level of confidence in their attitudes toward divorce as an institution.

The largest percentage of respondents perceived the major causes of divorce to be first - sexual adjustment, second - nagging husband or wife, and third - money matters in the form of managing the money or being successful in an occupation. More males perceived the consequences of divorce to be relief and happiness; more females perceived the consequences of divorce to be guilt and unhappiness. Fifty-seven per cent of the respondents stated they would feel uncomfortable marrying a divorcee themselves.