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Factors which facilitate and hinder psycho-social adjustment for mothers who are living apart from their… Larsen, Lori B. 1987

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FACTORS WHICH F A C I L I T A T E AND HINDER P S Y C H O - S O C I A L ADJUSTMENT FOR MOTHERS WHO A R E L I V I N G A P A R T FROM T H E I R C H I L D R E N By LORI B . L A R S E N B . A . U n i v e r s i t y o f V i c t o r i a , 1982 A T H E S I S SUBMITTED I N P A R T I A L F U L F I L L M E N T OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE F A C U L T Y OF GRADUATE S T U D I E S ( D e p a r t m e n t o f C o u n s e l l i n g P s y c h o l o g y ) We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s a s c o n f o r m i n g t o t h e r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE U N I V E R S I T Y OF B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A 1987 © L o r i B . L a r s e n , 1987 32 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of Counse l l ing Psychology The University of British Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 Date A p r i l 27, 1987  DE-6(3/81) i i A B S T R A C T T h e r e i s v e r y l i t t l e i n f o r m a t i o n i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e on m o t h e r s w i t h o u t c u s t o d y o f t h e i r c h i l d r e n . I n a n a t t e m p t t o p a r t i a l l y r e m e d y t h i s s i t u a t i o n a n e x p l o r a t o r y s t u d y , b a s e d on i n - d e p t h i n t e r v i e w s w i t h m o t h e r s who v o l u n t a r i l y c h o s e t o l i v e a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n , was c o n d u c t e d . The a i m was t o i d e n t i f y t h e f a c t o r s f a c i l i t a t i n g a n d h i n d e r i n g a d j u s t m e n t f o r t h e s e women. U s i n g a s a m p l e o f 17 women who v o l u n t e e r e d f o r t h e s t u d y , t h e c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t t e c h n i q u e was e m p l o y e d t o g a t h e r d a t a f r o m t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s . The c o l l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s w e r e t h e n g r o u p e d i n t o c a t e g o r i e s a n d d e s c r i p t i v e s t a t e m e n t s w e r e f o r m u l a t e d a b o u t e a c h o n e . T h e r e w e r e 212 c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s c o l l e c t e d f r o m t h e 17 p a r t i c i p a n t s . T h e s e i n c i d e n t s w e r e g r o u p e d i n t o 3 m a i n c a t e g o r i e s a n d 15 s u b - c a t e g o r i e s . T h e c a t e g o r i e s p r o v i d e a c o n c i s e a n d e a s i l y u n d e r s t o o d d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e f a c i l i t a t i n g a n d h i n d e r i n g f a c t o r s a f f e c t i n g a d j u s t m e n t f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . T h e r e l i a b i l i t y o f t h e p l a c e m e n t o f i t e m s i n t o t h e a p p r o p r i a t e c a t e g o r i e s was t e s t e d by u s i n g f o u r i n d e p e n d e n t r a t e r s , u s i n g p e r c e n t a g e o f a g r e e m e n t a s a n i n d e x o f r e l i a b i l i t y . R e c o m m e n d a t i o n s f o r s u p p o r t i v e s e r v i c e s a n d p r o g r a m s n e e d e d by, t h e s e women a r e o f f e r e d . T h e r e f o r e , t h e f i n d i n g s a r e u s e f u l f o r p l a n n i n g a n d i m p l e m e n t i n g f u t u r e p r o g r a m s f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . A s w e l l , g u i d e l i n e s a r e p r e s e n t e d f o r i n d i v i d u a l , f a m i l y , a n d d i v o r c e m e d i a t i o n c o u n s e l l o r s who f i n d t h e m s e l v e s w o r k i n g w i t h t h i s g r o u p o f women. i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS Page A b s t r a c t i i Tab le of Contents i i i L i s t of T a b l e s v i Acknowledgements v i i CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION 1 Overview 1 D e f i n i t i o n of Terms 3 Importance of the Study 5 Purpose of the Study 6 Assumptions 7 L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study 7 CHAPTER II. LITERATURE REVIEW 10 Research E x p e c t a t i o n s 22 Research Assumptions 23 Review of the C r i t i c a l I n c i den t Technique 24 CHAPTER I I I . METHODOLOGY 26 Sample 26 Background of P a r t i c i p a n t s 28 P i l o t Study 29 Data C o l l e c t i o n 30 The In terv iew 31 C r i t e r i a Check 34 I n te rv iewer C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s 34 Data A n a l y s i s 35 i v Page Rater R e l i a b i l i t y 38 CHAPTER IV. RESULTS 41 Time Frame 50 Agent Re spons ib l e f o r the I nc iden t O c c u r r i n g 58 CHAPTER V. DISCUSSION 63 Statement of R e s u l t s 63 S o c i a l Support 63 I n c l u s i o n i n the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e 64 Evas i ve Behav ior 65 Negat ive Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Support . . . 66 E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e 68 G u i l t 69 Poverty 70 Supero rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s 70 Time Frame 71 Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the I nc iden t O c c u r r i n g 72 Comparisons With Other Research F i n d i n g s 73 I m p l i c a t i o n s and Recommendations 75 S o c i a l Change S t r a t e g i e s 79 CHAPTER VI . SUMMARY 83 Summary of F i n d i n g s 83 Summary of Recommendations 85 Recommendations f o r Fu ture Research 86 Conc lu s i on 87 V Page NOTES 91 REFERENCES 93 APPENDICES A. N o t i c e A d v e r t i s i n g f o r P a r t i c i p a n t s 98 B. Consent Form 99 C. Demographic Q u e s t i o n n a i r e 100 D. D e f i n i t i o n of Subord ina te C a t e g o r i e s 101 E. D e f i n i t i o n of Supero rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s . . . . 109 F. F u l l - l e n g t h I n c i d e n t s and t h e i r S i m p l i f i e d C o u n t e r p a r t s 110 G. Demographic I n fo rmat ion 128 H. Summary of Demographic I n fo rmat ion 132 I. Rater R e l i a b i l i t y Scores f o r Supero rd ina te and Subord ina te C a t e g o r i e s 133 v i LIST OF TABLES Page Tab le 1. Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th in Each Supero rd ina te Category 42 Tab le 2. Frequency and Percentage of F a c i l i t a t i v e C a t e g o r i e s W i th in Each Supero rd ina te Category 43 Tab le 3. Frequency and Percentage of H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s W i th i n Each S u p e r o r d i n a t e . Cateogry 44 Tab le 4. Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th i n Each F a c i l i t a t i v e Subord ina te Category 45 Tab le 5. Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th in Each H i n d e r i n g Subord inate Category 46 Tab le 6. Frequency and Percentage of Agent Re spons ib l e f o r F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i d e n t s 47 Tab le 7. Frequency and Percentage of Agent Respons ib le f o r H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s 49 Tab le 8. Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r Sepa ra t i on the F a c i l i t a t i v e and H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t Occur red . . . 51 Tab le 9. Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r S e p a r a t i o n the F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i den t Occur red 52 Tab le 10. Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r S e p a r a t i o n the H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t Occur red 53 Tab le 11. Length of Time from Sepa ra t i on the F a c i l i t a t i v e I nc iden t Occur red 54 Tab le 12. Length of Time from Sepa ra t i on the H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t Occur red 57 Tab le 13. Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the F a c i l i t a t i v e and H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s 59 Tab le 14. Agent Re spons ib l e f o r the F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i d e n t s 60 Tab le 15. Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s 62 v i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I w o u l d l i k e t o t h a n k D r s . L o r e t t e W o o l s e y a n d Norm A m u n d s o n f o r t h e i r t i m e a n d c o n s t r u c t i v e a d v i c e . S p e c i a l t h a n k s i s e x p r e s s e d t o D r . W o o l s e y f o r h e r g u i d a n c e i n f o c u s i n g a n d c l a r i f y i n g t h e r e s e a r c h m e t h o d o l o g y . I n p a r t i c u l a r , I w i s h t o e x p r e s s warm a p p r e c i a t i o n t o t h e c h a i r m a n o f my t h e s i s c o m m i t t e e , D r . R o b e r t T o l s m a , f o r h i s c o n t i n u e d s u p p o r t , e n c o u r a g m e n t a n d p a t i e n c e i n h e l p i n g me t o p u r s u e a n d c o m p l e t e wha t seemed t o be a n o v e r w h e l m i n g t a s k . H i s a s s i s t a n c e t h r o u g h o u t , i n p l a n n i n g a n d i m p l e m e n t i n g t h i s s t u d y , i s g r e a t l y v a l u e d . A d d i t i o n a l l y , I w o u l d l i k e t o g i v e a s p e c i a l t h a n k - y o u t o my m o t h e r w h o s e s u p p o r t i s a p p r e c i a t e d i n more w a y s t h a n I c a n e x p r e s s . I w o u l d a l s o l i k e t o g i v e a s p e c i a l m e n t i o n t o my d a u g h t e r , S h a n t i , who was t h e i m p e t u s f o r c h o o s i n g t h i s t o p i c o f r e s e a r c h . A n d f i n a l l y , I w o u l d l i k e t o a c k n o w l e d g e t h e i n v a l u a b l e c o n t r i b u t i o n made by t h e 17 women who p a r t i c i p a t e d a n d s h a r e d t h e i r p e r s o n a l a n d s o m e t i m e s d e e p l y p a i n f u l e x p e r i e n c e s . T h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i s g r e a t l y a p p r e c i a t e d , f o r w i t h o u t i t t h i s s t u d y w o u l d n o t h a v e b e e n p o s s i b l e . 1 CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION Overview An under s tand ing of the e x p e r i e n c e of mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n i s l i m i t e d s i n c e n o n - c u s t o d i a l motherhood i s such a recent and r e l a t i v e l y i n f r e q u e n t phenomenon (Doudna, 1982; F i s c h e r , 1983; F i s c h e r & Cardea , 1981, 1982; G r e i f , 1985, 1986, 1987; I s enha r t , 1979; K e l l e r , 1975; K o e h l e r , 1982; L u e p n i t z , 1982; McKie, P r e n t i c e & Reed, 1983; Paskowi tz , 1982; Rosenblum, 1984, 1986; Rowlands, 1980; Rub in , 1983; S u l l i v a n , 1979; Todre s , 1978; Weiss , 1979). When j o i n t - c u s t o d y i s e i t h e r not workable or u n d e s i r a b l e , c h i l d r e n g e n e r a l l y l i v e w i th one parent or the o t h e r . And, a c c o r d i n g to L u e p n i t z (1982), i t i s much more s o c i a l l y a c c e p t a b l e to be the custody parent than the non-custody parent i f one i s a mother because mothers are expected to p a r e n t . That i s , " S o c i e t y o p e r a t e s , f o r the most p a r t , on two i n t e r l o c k i n g as sumpt ions : tha t i t i s the r o l e of women to ca re f o r the c h i l d r e n and the r o l e of men to be the breadwinner " ( L e v i n e , 1976, p. 15). Thus, i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g tha t in Canada about e i g h t y - t h r e e percent of c h i l d r e n from separa ted or d i v o r c e d f a m i l i e s l i v e w i th t h e i r mothers ( S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 1983). In accordance w i th the c u l t u r a l norm, Berger (1983) suggested that c h i l d r e n are b e t t e r o f f wi th t h e i r mother in cases of d i v o r c e . A d d i t i o n a l l y , in O l s h a k e r ' s (1971) o p i n i o n , the need f o r a mother i s of g r e a t e s t importance d u r i n g i n f a n c y 2 and p r e - s c h o o l y e a r s . A c c o r d i n g to O l s h a k e r , f a t h e r s can p r o v i d e no comparable nur tu rance to t h e i r young c h i l d r e n . B e t t e l h e i m (1956) ma in ta in s a s i m i l a r c a u t i o n , " . . . t h e male p h y s i o l o g y and that pa r t of h i s psycho logy based on i t are not geared to i n f a n t c a r e " (p. 125). These s ta tements , a long w i th c o u n t l e s s o t h e r s permeate our l i v e s . On the one hand, they d e s c r i b e the. t r a d i t i o n a l c h i l d r e a r i n g r o l e s taken by most men and women in our s o c i e t y . And, on the o ther hand, they h e l p to s u s t a i n those r o l e s . A l though many peop le q u e s t i o n the v a l i d i t y of these b e l i e f s ( B a d i n t e r , 1980; Doudna, 1982; F i s c h e r , 1983; F i s c h e r & Cardea , 1981; G lubka , 1983; H o u s t l e , 1979; I s enha r t , 1980; K e l l e r , 1975; K o e h l e r , 1982; L e v i n e , 1976; L u e p n i t z , 1978, 1982; McKie, P r e n t i c e , & Reed, 1983; Mead, 1935, 1954; O r t h n e r , Brown, & Ferguson, 1976; Paskowicz, 1982; R i c k s , 1984; Rosenblum, 1986; Rosentha l & Keshet , 1981; Rowlands, 1980; Rub in , 1976, 1983; S t o l l , 1985; S u l l i v a n , 1979; Veever s , 1980; Weiss , 1979), they a re s t i l l the p r e v a l e n t p o i n t of view in our c u l t u r e . Fur thermore , Delamont (1980), Musetto (1982), and S t o l l (1985) b e l i e v e that s i n c e the norms f o r a p p r o p r i a t e behav io r a re l e a r n e d and i n t e r n a l i z e d very e a r l y in l i f e , then i t f o l l o w s that the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother i s not imperv ious to the t e n e t s of the l a r g e r s o c i e t y . T h i s may be one pr imary reason why mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n may have d i f f i c u l t y a d j u s t i n g to t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . That i s , because i t i s such an unusua l development f o r women to r e l i n q u i s h cu s tody , the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother i s o f t e n thought of as u n n a t u r a l , whatever her a c t u a l p s y c h i c s t a t e (Weiss, 1979). C o r r e s p o n d i n g l y , Rubin (1983) 3 w r o t e t h a t , " . . . e v e n on t h o s e r e l a t i v e l y r a r e o c c a s i o n s when a d i v o r c e d m o t h e r w i l l i n g l y g i v e s up c u s t o d y t o a f a t h e r , n e i t h e r s h e n o r we a r e w h o l l y c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h t h e c h o i c e . We may u n d e r s t a n d i n t e l l e c t u a l l y , we may e v e n s p e a k w o r d s i n s u p p o r t o f h e r d e c i s i o n . B u t i n s i d e we w o n d e r , ' h o w c o u l d s h e do i t ? ' A n d s h e may h a v e 20 s o u n d r e a s o n s f o r m a k i n g t h e d e c i s i o n t h a t w a y , b u t g u i l t u s u a l l y c l o g s h e r i n n e r l i f e a n d c o r r o d e s h e r p e a c e o f m i n d " ( p . 1 9 6 ) . T h u s , t h e c o n c e p t t h a t i t i s n o r m a l f o r m o t h e r s t o h a v e c u s t o d y o f t h e i r c h i l d r e n n o t o n l y makes i t d i f f i c u l t f o r them t o c h o o s e t o l i v e a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n , b u t i t a l s o makes i t h a r d t o c o n v i n c e o t h e r p e o p l e a n d t h e m s e l v e s t h a t i t may be b e t t e r i f t h e y l e a d a l i f e i n . a s e p a r a t e h o u s e h o l d f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . T h i s s t u d y was p r i m a r i l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h u n d e r s t a n d i n g wha t c o n d i t i o n s f a c i l i t a t e a n d h i n d e r a d j u s t m e n t f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . The c e n t r a l a i m was t o u n d e r s t a n d t h e s e c o n d i t i o n s a s a means t o i n c r e a s e t h e s e n s i t i v i t y a n d e f f e c t i v e n e s s o f s e r v i c e s f o r m o t h e r s who a r e l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . The g e n e r a l r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n a s k e d o f t h e women i n t h i s s t u d y w a s , " W h a t , f r o m y o u r p e r s p e c t i v e , f a c i l i t a t e d a n d h i n d e r e d a d j u s t m e n t t o y o u r s i t u a t i o n ? " A n s w e r i n g t h i s q u e s t i o n may p r o v i d e v a l u a b l e i n f o r m a t i o n t h a t w i l l a s s i s t n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s a n d c o u n s e l l o r s w o r k i n g w i t h t h i s g r o u p . D e f i n i t i o n o f T e r m s The f o l l o w i n g t e r m s a r e r e f e r r e d t o i n t h e f o l l o w i n g a n d s u b s e q u e n t c h a p t e r s . T h e r e f o r e , t h e y a r e d e f i n e d h e r e i n o r d e r t o e n a b l e t h e r e a d e r t o u n d e r s t a n d t h e t e r m s u s e d , p a r t i c u l a r l y 4 i n Chapter II, the L i t e r a t u r e Review. N o n - C u s t o d i a l Mother A n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother i s a woman who l o s t or r e l i n q u i s h e d custody of her n a t u r a l o f f s p r i n g a f t e r hav ing l i v e d f o r a t ime wi th that c h i l d or c h i l d r e n (Paskowicz, 1982). For the purpose of t h i s s tudy a woman was c o n s i d e r e d e l i g i b l e to p a r t i c i p a t e as a n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother i f she v o l u n t a r i l y chose to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d e n . Sepa ra t i on from the C h i l d r e n The s t a t e of l i v i n g apar t from the c h i l d r e n . That i s , l i v i n g in a separa te househo ld from the c h i l d r e n . The term r e f e r s to a p h y s i c a l as opposed to a p s y c h o l o g i c a l s e p a r a t i o n . Inc ident An i n c i d e n t i s any even t , i d e a , a c t i o n or thought tha t o c c u r r e d to or f o r the i n d i v i d u a l p a r t i c i p a n t . F a c i l i t a t i n g I n c i den t - H e l p i n g or c o n t r i b u t i n g to a p o s i t i v e outcome. H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t - C o n t r i b u t i n g to a nega t i ve outcome or p r e v e n t i n g a p o s i t i v e outcome. C r i t i c a l I n c i den t F lanagan (1954) d e f i n e d an i n c i d e n t as c r i t i c a l i f i t made a s i g n i f i c a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n , e i t h e r p o s i t i v e or n e g a t i v e , to the g e n e r a l aim of the a c t i v i t y . In t h i s s tudy , the respondents judged f o r themselves whether an i n c i d e n t was c r i t i c a l . 5 Adjustment D e f i n i n g the term adjustment i s a p e r s i s t e n t problem in psycho logy because there are numerous c o n c e p t i o n s of how to d e f i n e or d e s c r i b e an a d j u s t e d person (Bonney, 1964). Coe (1972) p o i n t e d out tha t adjustment i s a p e r s o n a l matter and that every i n d i v i d u a l has h i s or her unique way of a d j u s t i n g . For the purpose of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n , the term i s d e s c r i b e d as an ongoing and a c t i v e p roces s and i s d e f i n e d as "A m o d i f i c a t i o n of a t t i t u d e s or behav i o r s to meet the demands of l i f e e f f e c t i v e l y , such a s , c a r r y i n g on c o n s t r u c t i v e i n t e r p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s , d e a l i n g w i th s t r e s s f u l or p rob l emat i c s i t u a t i o n s , hand l i ng r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s , or f u l f i l l i n g p e r s o n a l needs and a ims" (Goldenson, 1985, p. 16). Importance of the Study In an attempt to understand and h e l p f a m i l i e s of d i v o r c e , r e s e a r c h e r s tend to focus p r i m a r i l y on those f a m i l y members who remain t o g e t h e r . That i s , they tend to approach f a m i l i e s of d i v o r c e as i f they c o n s i s t of on ly one p a r e n t , as though the n o n - c u s t o d i a l parent i s no longer important to the f a m i l y u n i t (Abarbane l , 1979). A review of the l i t e r a t u r e r e v e a l e d that an under s tand ing of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers has r e c e i v e d scant a t t e n t i o n , and con sequen t l y , l i t t l e i s known about these women. Fur thermore , there i s l i t t l e l i t e r a t u r e at the present t ime f o cu s i n g s p e c i f i c a l l y on the c o n d i t i o n s which f a c i l i t a t e and h inder e f f e c t i v e adjustment to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s c i r c u m s t a n c e . The s i n g l e e x c e p t i o n i s a study i n which G r e i f (1987) employed a 6 q u e s t i o n n a i r e to i n q u i r e about the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother's l e v e l of comfort r e g a r d i n g her s i t u a t i o n . T h e r e f o r e , s i n c e i n f o r m a t i o n about mothers who are l i v i n g apart from t h e i r c h i l d r e n i s l i m i t e d , i t i s important to augment the l i m i t e d r e s e a r c h p r e s e n t l y a v a i l a b l e on n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers by o f f e r i n g i n s i g h t s i n t o s p e c i f i c f e a t u r e s , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and s i t u a t i o n s t h at c o n t r i b u t e to or d e t r a c t from the s u c c e s s f u l adjustment of these women. Th i s r e s e a r c h i s seen as d i s t i n c t from other r e s e a r c h because i n f o r m a t i o n i s sought about the f a c i l i t a t i v e and h i n d e r i n g c o n d i t i o n s that a f f e c t adjustment to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother's s i t u a t i o n , a c c o r d i n g to her remembered experience. The c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t technique was used in t h i s study to s t i m u l a t e the respondent's r e c a l l and the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of the c r i t i c a l requirements a f f e c t i n g adjustment are c o n s i d e r e d to be important f o r the advancement and improvement of s e r v i c e s f o r mothers l i v i n g apart from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Purpose of the Study The purpose of t h i s study was to i d e n t i f y the c o n d i t i o n s which f a c i l i t a t e and hinder e f f e c t i v e adjustment to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother's n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e - s t y l e . T h i s account should be both i n t e r e s t i n g and u s e f u l to others who are working with mothers who are l i v i n g a p a r t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n or to those who f i n d themselves in t h i s s i t u a t i o n . 7 Assumptions C e r t a i n assumptions u n d e r l i e the r e s e a r c h method. In order to employ the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t technique i t i s necessary to assume t h a t : a. I n c i d e n t s e x i s t which f a c i l i t a t e and hinder adjustment to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother's s i t u a t i o n . b. P a r t i c i p a n t s w i l l be a b l e to a c c u r a t e l y r e c a l l i n c i d e n t s experienced as a v o l u n t a r y n o n - c u s t o d i a l p a r e n t . c. Respondents w i l l be a b l e to a c c u r a t e l y d i s c r i m i n a t e which events f a c i l i t a t e d and which hindered t h e i r adjustment. d. There i s a p a t t e r n of shared experiences among n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers which can be i d e n t i f i e d . L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study The c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t technique used i n t h i s study i s of a s u b j e c t i v e nature and i s t h e r e f o r e s u b j e c t to c e r t a i n disadvantages or l i m i t a t i o n s . For example, the r e t r o s p e c t i v e nature of the data make i t v u l n e r a b l e to the r e p o r t e r ' s p o s s i b l e la c k of r e c a l l of important i n f o r m a t i o n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , because of the s e n s i t i v e nature of some of the i n c i d e n t s , respondents may have been tempted to a l t e r the f a c t s or p o s s i b l y r e - w r i t e h i s t o r y i n order to make t h e i r s i t u a t i o n seem more a c c e p t a b l e to o t h e r s and to themselves. However, given the anonymity and v o l u n t a r y nature secured by the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t approach, as w e l l as the i n t e r v i e w e r c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s (see p. 34) , these l i m i t a t i o n s were kept to a minimum. Another l i m i t a t i o n concerns the p o s s i b l e l o s s of 8 i n f o r m a t i o n i n the p roces s of summarizing the f u l l - l e n g t h i n c i d e n t s . However, t h e r e i s no reason to b e l i e v e tha t t h i s o c c u r r e d because each i n t e r v i e w s e s s i o n was aud io tape recorded and t h e r e f o r e , the r e s e a r c h e r had an a ccu ra te account of what each p a r t i c i p a n t r e p o r t e d . As w e l l , the i n v e s t i g a t o r was t r a i n e d in the summary t e c h n i q u e , and as pa r t of the data g a t h e r i n g p r o c e d u r e , s i x f o l l o w - u p q u e s t i o n s were asked dur ing the i n t e r v i e w to h e l p i d e n t i f y the i n c i d e n t more s p e c i f i c a l l y and w i th more c l a r i t y . Consequent ly the re sponden t ' s s tatements were e a s i e r to summarize. A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h i s p roces s i n v o l v e d n o t i n g who the p a r t i c i p a n t r e p o r t e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g as w e l l as n o t i n g what was s p e c i f i c a l l y f a c i l i t a t i n g or h i n d e r i n g about the i n c i d e n t . S e v e r a l examples of f u l l - l e n g t h i n c i d e n t s and t h e i r s i m p l i f i e d • c o u n t e r p a r t s (Appendix F) have been i n c l u d e d . G e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y of the r e s u l t s i s a f f e c t e d by the number of respondents in the s tudy . S ince p a r t i c i p a n t s in t h i s study were l i m i t e d in number to 17, t h i s was taken i n t o account when i n t e r p r e t i n g the r e s u l t s . In a d d i t i o n , p a r t i c i p a n t s s e l e c t e d f o r t h i s r e s e a r c h were c o n f i n e d to n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers who had v o l u n t a r i l y r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n to t h e i r ex - spouse s . T h e r e f o r e , no c l a i m s a re made as to the ex tent to which these women are t y p i c a l of o ther n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and c o n s e q u e n t l y , one can on ly s p e c u l a t e as to the l i k e l i h o o d of o ther n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers hav ing s i m i l a r expe r i ence s to those women i n t h i s s tudy. Fur thermore , Borg and G a l l (1983) p o i n t e d out tha t peop le who v o l u n t e e r to p a r t i c i p a t e in s t u d i e s tend to be h i gher in i n t e l l i g e n c e and have a h i gher need fo r achievement 9 t h a n n o n - v o l u n t e e r s . T h i s c l a i m i n d i c a t e s t h a t v o l u n t e e r p a r t i c i p a n t s may i d e n t i f y d i f f e r e n t i n c i d e n t s t h a n a n o n - v o l u n t e e r g r o u p . A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h e s a m p l e f o r t h i s s t u d y was n o t r a n d o m l y s e l e c t e d b e c a u s e t h e number o f a v a i l a b l e n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s was l i m i t e d . A n o t h e r l i m i t a t i o n h a s t o do w i t h how o l d t h e c h i l d was when c u s t o d y was r e l i n q u i s h e d a s t h i s may r e s u l t i n l e s s c o n s i s t e n t r e s p o n s e s among women t h a n w o u l d o t h e r w i s e o c c u r g i v e n t h a t a l l r e l i n q u i s h e d a c h i l d o f t h e same a g e . A n d f i n a l l y , i t i s i m p o r t a n t t o p o i n t o u t t h a t a l t h o u g h f r e q u e n c i e s a n d p e r c e n t a g e s a r e u s e d i n t h e a n a l y s i s o f t h e r e s u l t s , no d e f i n i t i v e c o n c l u s i o n s a r e d r a w n f r o m t h e d a t a b e c a u s e t h e y a r e r e g a r d e d a s d e s c r i p t i v e i n n a t u r e . T h u s , b e c a u s e o f t h e d e s c r i p t i v e m e t h o d o l o g y , s m a l l s a m p l e . s i z e , r e s t r i c t e d c o m p o s i t i o n a n d v o l u n t e e r s t a t u s o f r e s p o n d e n t s , t h e f i n d i n g s o f t h i s r e s e a r c h a r e r e g a r d e d a s e x p l o r a t o r y . R e c o g n i z i n g t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f t h i s s t u d y , e v e r y e f f o r t was made t o t a k e t h e s e i n t o a c c o u n t when i n t e r p r e t i n g t h e r e s u l t s . 10 CHAPTER II LITERATURE REVIEW A review of the l i t e r a t u r e r e v e a l e d that t he re i s very l i t t l e w r i t t e n on the e x p e r i e n c e of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . The o c c u r r e n c e of mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n i s a f a i r l y new and unusual phenomenon, which may e x p l a i n the l a ck of r e s e a r c h in t h i s a r e a . T h i s shor tage of l i t e r a t u r e i s one i n d i c a t i o n of the n e c e s s i t y f o r f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h on n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. G r e i f (1987) has a l s o p o i n t e d out that mothers wi thout cus tody a re the l e a s t s t u d i e d and l e a s t unders tood group of s i n g l e pa ren t s and he t h e r e f o r e advocates the need f o r more r e s e a r c h in t h i s a r e a . Some of the rev iewed r e s e a r c h examined the reasons why n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers d e c i d e d to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . In o ther r e s e a r c h , the focus i s on the p e r s o n a l i t y t r a i t s found to be t y p i c a l of these women. A d d i t i o n a l l y , in much of the r e s e a r c h the focus i s on how n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers compared w i th c u s t o d i a l mothers . The i n f o r m a t i o n from these r e s e a r c h s t u d i e s i s seen as neces sa ry to b e t t e r unders tand the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n . I t was not u n t i l 1975 that the f i r s t r e s e a r c h paper on n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers appeared ( K e l l e r , 1975). K e l l e r i n t e r v i e w e d 16 women who r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n to t h e i r ex-husbands. Her pr imary r e s e a r c h i n t e n t i o n was to i d e n t i f y p e r s o n a l i t y p a t t e r n s common to n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. A c c o r d i n g to K e l l e r , the women i n her study p e r c e i v e d t h e i r 11 f a t h e r s a s t h e n u r t u r i n g p a r e n t , w h i l e p e r c e i v i n g t h e i r m o t h e r s a s d i s t a n t . I n a d d i t i o n , K e l l e r c o n s i d e r e d t h e women t o be p r o d u c t s o f u n r e s o l v e d o e d i p a l s t r i v i n g s a n d t h e r e f o r e , K e l l e r c o n c l u d e d t h a t t h e y r e l i n q u i s h e d c u s t o d y t o t h e f a t h e r o f t h e c h i l d r e n i n a n a t t e m p t t o p r o v i d e t h e i r c h i l d r e n w i t h a s i t u a t i o n t h e y d e s i r e d w i t h t h e i r own f a t h e r s . K e l l e r a l s o s u g g e s t e d t h a t t h e women i n h e r s t u d y f e a r e d i n t i m a c y a n d c o n s e q u e n t l y , t h e y r e l i n q u i s h e d c u s t o d y a s a way t o r e l i e v e t h e t h r e a t o f i n t i m a c y i n t r i n s i c t o t h e m o t h e r - c h i l d d y a d . The n e x t s t u d y on n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s was n o t c o n d u c t e d u n t i l 1978 ( T o d r e s , 1 9 7 8 ) . T o d r e s s u r v e y e d 38 women, e x a m i n i n g t h e r e a s o n s t h e y d e c i d e d t o l i v e a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . A c c o r d i n g t o T o d r e s , t h i s d e c i s i o n was n o t i m p u l s i v e , b u t was r e a c h e d a f t e r c o n s i d e r a b l e t h o u g h t a n d some d i s c u s s i o n w i t h t h e i r h u s b a n d . I n a d d i t i o n , t h e d e c i s i o n t o l e a v e was b a s e d p r i m a r i l y on c o n c e r n f o r t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s w e l l - b e i n g . T h a t i s , m o s t o f t h e women r e p o r t e d t h a t t h e y t h o u g h t i t was i n t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s b e s t i n t e r e s t t o r e m a i n l i v i n g w i t h t h e i r f a t h e r b e c a u s e he c o u l d p r o v i d e a more s t a b l e a n d f i n a n c i a l l y s e c u r e e n v i r o n m e n t f o r t h e m . T o d r e s a l s o f o u n d t h a t t h e women e x p e r i e n c e d s o c i e t a l r e j e c t i o n f o r t h e i r d e c i s i o n t o l i v e a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , T o d r e s p o i n t e d o u t t h a t a l t h o u g h t h e m o t h e r s m i s s e d t h e i r c h i l d r e n a n d f e l t a s e n s e o f g u i l t f o r l e a v i n g , t h e y s t i l l t h o u g h t t h e y made t h e r i g h t d e c i s i o n . I s e n h a r t ( 1 9 7 9 ) c o m p a r e d n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s w i t h c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s a n d f o u n d t h a t t h e t w o g r o u p s d i d n o t d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y on t h e v a r i a b l e s o f s o c i a l c o n f o r m i t y , v a l u e 12 s y s t e m s , p e r s o n a l r e s o u r c e s a n d v i e w o f h a v i n g a c t e d i n t h e b e s t i n t e r e s t o f t h e i r c h i l d r e n . H o w e v e r , a c c o r d i n g t o I s e n h a r t , t h e c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s v i e w e d t h e m s e l v e s a s m o r e a d e q u a t e a s p a r e n t s t h a n t h e n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s d i d . A s i m i l a r s t u d y was c o n d u c t e d b y F i s c h e r a n d C a r d e a ( 1 9 8 1 ) c o m p a r i n g t h e l i f e - s t y l e o f n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s w i t h t h e l i f e - s t y l e o f m a r r i e d c o u p l e s w i t h c h i l d r e n a n d , c o n s i s t e n t w i t h I s e n h a r t ' s f i n d i n g s , t h e y d i s c o v e r e d t h a t t h e r e w e r e no p a r t i c u l a r t r a i t s , d i s p o s i t i o n s o r l i f e - s t y l e s t h a t u n i q u e l y c h a r a c t e r i z e d women l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . T h e y d i d f i n d h o w e v e r , t h a t a l l o f t h e n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s i n t h e i r s t u d y w e r e o f t h e o p i n i o n t h a t s o c i e t y ' s a t t i t u d e s t o w a r d t h e m w e r e n e g a t i v e . F i s c h e r a n d C a r d e a c o n t i n u e d t h e i r r e s e a r c h i n 1 9 8 2 , c o m p a r i n g 17 n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s w i t h 16 c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s a n d f o u n d t h a t t h e v i s i t a t i o n p a t t e r n s saw more f r e q u e n t f a t h e r v i s i t a t i o n when m o t h e r h a d c u s t o d y t h a n m o t h e r v i s i t a t i o n when f a t h e r h a d c u s t o d y . F i s c h e r a n d C a r d e a s u g g e s t e d t h a t t h i s p a t t e r n may be a t t r i b u t e d t o l a c k o f f u n d s on t h e p a r t o f t h e n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . T h e y p o s t u l a t e d t h a t f u n d s p l a y an i m p o r t a n t r o l e b e c a u s e o n e - t h i r d o f t h e c h i l d r e n o f t h e n o n - c u s t o d y m o t h e r ' s g r o u p l i v e d f a r t h e r away t h a n a d a y s d r i v e f r o m t h e i r m o t h e r s , w h i l e o n l y one c h i l d i n t h e c u s t o d y m o t h e r s g r o u p l i v e d t h a t f a r away f r o m t h e n o n - c u s t o d y f a t h e r . F u r t h e r m o r e , s i n c e women a r e c o n s i d e r e d t o be i n a l o w i n c o m e c a t e g o r y , e a r n i n g a b o u t f i f t y - t h r e e p e r c e n t l e s s t h a n men ( S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 1 9 8 5 ) , t h e n i t u n d o u b t e d l y makes i t more d i f f i c u l t f o r a n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r t o t r a v e l t h i s d i s t a n c e a n d 13 d e f r a y the c o s t s i n v o l v e d . In a d d i t i o n , n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in F i s c h e r and C a r d e a ' s (1982) study r e p o r t e d more nega t i ve r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i th t h e i r c h i l d r e n than n o n - c u s t o d i a l f a t h e r s . And f i n a l l y , c h i l d r e n ' s r e l a t i o n s h i p w i th t h e i r mothers was d e s c r i b e d as c l o s e i n s i x t y - t w o pe rcen t of the cu s tody , but i n on ly t h i r t y - f i v e percen t of the non-cus tody group. F i s c h e r and Cardea h y p o t h e s i z e d tha t the l ack of r e g u l a r c o n t a c t w i th the c h i l d r e n in the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s group may be a p a r t i a l e x p l a n a t i o n f o r these f i n d i n g s . Koeh ler (1982) conducted i n - d e p t h i n t e r v i e w s w i th th ree n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in order to ga in a broader p i c t u r e of t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e . She conc luded that the most s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f i c u l t y f o r these women was the nega t i ve judgment and c r i t i c i s m from o ther s r e g a r d i n g t h e i r d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cu s tody . Koeh ler p o i n t e d out tha t one consequence of the nega t i ve c r i t i c i s m that these women e x p e r i e n c e d was a sense of g u i l t f o r not f u l f i l l i n g t h e i r duty as mother in the t r a d i t i o n a l sense. Koeh ler a l s o noted that the women in her study emphasized the emot iona l pa in i n v o l v e d in making the d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h c u s t o d y . Even though these women saw t h e i r c h i l d r e n r e g u l a r l y , d i d not view themselves as hav ing abandoned the r o l e of n u r t u r i n g p a r e n t , and d i d not l ove t h e i r c h i l d r e n any l e s s , they s t i l l f e l t a pro found sense of l o s s and g r i e f r e s u l t i n g from t h e i r d e c i s i o n . Paskowicz, in her 1982 book e n t i t l e d Absentee Mothers , expanded on K o e h l e r ' s work. Paskowicz i d e n t i f i e d the reasons 14 why the 100 n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers i n t e r v i e w e d i n her study r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody of t h e i r c h i d r e n . She d i s c o v e r e d tha t on ly in a m i n o r i t y of i n s t a n c e s d i d mothers r e l i n q u i s h cus tody f o r a s i n g l e rea son . The m a j o r i t y mentioned s e v e r a l reasons f o r making t h i s d e c i s i o n . In a d d i t i o n , Paskowicz found tha t t h e i r reasons were not u s u a l l y s imple or c l e a r - c u t ; they were o f t e n pa r t of a more i n t r i c a t e c o n t e x t . A l l p a r t i c i p a n t s in her study s t a t e d that f i n a n c i a l reasons p l a y e d a major r o l e i n t h e i r d e c i s i o n and many r e p o r t e d tha t s e r i o u s emot iona l problems p l a y e d a c r i t i c a l p a r t . Some s a i d that t h e i r d e s i r e f o r p e r s o n a l freedom i n f l u e n c e d t h e i r d e c i s i o n , wh i l e o the r s r e p o r t e d tha t i n t i m i d a t i o n by t h e i r ex-husband and/or h i s f a m i l y a f f e c t e d t h e i r d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h custody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Paskowicz a l s o focused on f a c t o r s in the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s c h i l d h o o d and marr iage that might have c o n t r i b u t e d to her choos ing to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n . She found, f o r example, tha t t he re was a h i gh degree of i n c e s t among these women as c h i l d r e n . Three pe rcen t of the p a r t i c i p a n t s in Paskowicz ' s tudy were i n c e s t v i c t i m s , compared to l e s s than 0.25% of the p o p u l a t i o n at l a r ge in the 1950 ' s . T h e r e f o r e , the r a t e of i n c e s t among her p a r t i c i p a n t s as c h i l d r e n was 12 t imes h i gher than that of t h e i r p e e r s . A d d i t i o n a l l y , Paskowicz found tha t t w e n t y - s i x percent of the women in her study had mothers who were n o n - c u s t o d i a l p a r e n t s . Fur thermore , the mothers of e i g h t pe rcen t of the women in the study d i e d wh i l e these women were c h i l d r e n . Thus, a t o t a l of t h i r t y - f o u r pe rcen t of the women in Paskowicz ' study were r a i s e d , i n pa r t or i n whole, by someone o ther than t h e i r mothers. T h i s i s 12 t imes h i gher than 15 the average. In mar r i a ge , Paskowicz d i s c o v e r e d that the m a j o r i t y of the women had s h o r t e r p e r i o d s of time between each b i r t h than the n a t i o n a l average and about f o r t y pe rcen t of the c h i l d r e n of the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers were r e p o r t e d as un in tended . T h i s compares to f i v e percent of c h i l d r e n be ing r e p o r t e d as un intended a c c o r d i n g to a n a t i o n a l f e r t i l i t y study conducted in the U n i t e d S t a t e s (Westoff & Ryder, 1977). A d d i t i o n a l l y , Paskowicz found that about seventy pe rcen t of the women's husbands took p a r t , to s i g n i f i c a n t deg rees , i n the ca re of t h e i r c h i l d r e n d u r i n g the mar r i a ge . T h i s i n d i c a t e s that the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers took i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n the competency and d e s i r e on the f a t h e r ' s p a r t to take on the r o l e of n u r t u r i n g p a r e n t , when making t h e i r d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody . Paskowicz (1982) noted that s i x t y pe rcen t of the women i n her study were i n therapy because they f e l t a need f o r h e l p as a r e s u l t of r e l i n q u i s h i n g custody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . The remain ing f o r t y percent of women in her sample had no t r o u b l e a d j u s t i n g to l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . One f a c t o r Paskowicz i d e n t i f i e d among the a d j u s t e d group which c o n t r i b u t e d to t h e i r e s t a b l i s h i n g and m a i n t a i n i n g emot iona l h e a l t h was p o s i t i v e input from o t h e r s , a f a c t o r which f a c i l i t a t e d t h e i r ad jus tment . F i s c h e r (1983) conducted a sma l l study documenting s o c i e t a l a t t i t u d e s toward v a r i o u s c h i l d - f r e e l i f e - s t y l e s and found that the har shes t judgments f e l l on homosexual coup le s and n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. Rosenblum (1984) conducted an e x p l o r a t o r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n of 16 mothers ' d e c i s i o n s to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody and d i s c o v e r e d that these d e c i s i o n s were u s u a l l y made without c o n s u l t a t i o n wi th f a m i l y or f r i e n d s , that the cus tody d e c i s i o n was most o f t e n made by the mother r a t h e r than the f a t h e r , and a l though the reasons g i ven f o r making t h i s d e c i s i o n were v a r i e d , they were u s u a l l y connected to e x t e r n a l f a c t o r s , p e r s o n a l f a c t o r s , or f a c t o r s r e l a t e d to the m o t h e r - c h i l d r e l a t i o n s h i p . In a d d i t i o n , Rosenblum found that many of the women in her sample r e p o r t e d that a l though they chose to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody , thus r e d u c i n g the degree to which t h e i r l i v e s were o r gan i zed around motherhood, they f e l t tha t t h e i r mother ing r o l e was s t i l l c e n t r a l i n t h e i r l i v e s . C o n t i n u i n g her r e s e a r c h , Rosenblum (1986) focused a t t e n t i o n on the reasons why n.on-custodia l mothers made the d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n , and found tha t the women she i n t e r v i e w e d made a d i s t i n c t i o n between l e a v i n g the c h i l d r e n as a " w i f e " and l e a v i n g as a "mother " . Those who r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody as a " w i f e " , a c c o r d i n g to Rosenblum, made the d e c i s i o n i n d e f e r e n c e of w i fe to husband. For example, conce s s i on s to a husband ' s demands, fear of h i s anger, or concern f o r h i s w e l l - b e i n g . However, those women l e a v i n g as a "mother" d i d so in terms of l e a v i n g the r o l e of mother. I t was the p a r e n t a l s t a t u s which was impor tant . Rosenblum conc luded tha t a l though the meaning of the d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody in the two cases was very d i f f e r e n t , the d i s t i n c t i o n tends to go unnot i ced among the gene ra l p o p u l a t i o n as w e l l as among n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . G r e i f (1986) surveyed 517 n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers , u s ing a 17 q u e s t i o n n a i r e in 1983, and one focus of h i s r e s e a r c h was on the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of those women who p a i d c h i l d support compared with those who d i d not . A d d i t i o n a l l y , he was concerned w i th the reasons each group r e p o r t e d f o r g i v i n g or not g i v i n g suppor t . About f o u r t e e n percent of the women in h i s s tudy p a i d c h i l d suppor t . T h i s compared w i th t h i r t y - f o u r pe rcen t of n o n - c u s t o d i a l f a t h e r s who p a i d suppor t . G r e i f ' s r e s u l t s i n d i c a t e d tha t the women who p a i d support earned a h i ghe r income than the women who d i d not pay suppor t . In a d d i t i o n , the mothers who gave support were l e s s l i k e l y to have j o i n t - c u s t o d y than mothers who d i d not g i ve suppor t . F u r t h e r , G r e i f found that the most f r e q u e n t l y c i t e d reason f o r making c h i l d support payments was because i t was r e q u i r e d by the c o u r t . Second ly , the women s t a t e d that they b e l i e v e d i t was the " f a i r " t h i n g to do. And t h i r d l y , they s a i d t h a t , they p a i d support i n o rder to s tay more i n v o l v e d in t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s l i f e . The m a j o r i t y of women who d i d not make c h i l d support payments r e p o r t e d tha t f i n a n c i a l reasons p reven ted them from making these payments. A d d i t i o n a l l y , many r e p o r t e d that the judge or t h e i r ex-husband d i d not request payment. Many of the women a l s o s t a t e d that they d i d not pay c h i l d support because t h e i r ex-husband d i d not g i ve support when he was the n o n - c u s t o d i a l p a r e n t . G r e i f (1987) c o n t i n u e d to ana l y ze h i s 1983 r e s e a r c h , f o c u s i n g a t t e n t i o n on the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s l e v e l of comfort r e g a r d i n g her r o l e . R e s u l t s from h i s q u e s t i o n n a i r e i n d i c a t e d t h a t , of the 517 p a r t i c i p a n t s , o n e - t h i r d r e p o r t e d f e e l i n g comfo r t ab l e wi th t h e i r l i f e as a n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother, 18 o n e - t h i r d h a d m i x e d r e a c t i o n s , a n d a n o t h e r t h i r d w e r e p r i m a r i l y u n c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . The m o t h e r s who w e r e c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h t h e i r n o n - c u s t o d i a l s t a t u s w e r e e x a m i n e d a s a s u b - g r o u p t o d e t e r m i n e wha t p e r s o n a l f a c t o r s w e r e p r e d i c t o r s o f c o m f o r t , a n d he f o u n d s i x v a r i a b l e s r e p o r t e d t o be i m p o r t a n t . T h e y w e r e : a ) t h e m o t h e r r e l i n q u i s h e d c u s t o d y o f h e r c h i l d r e n v o l u n t a r i l y , b ) s h e g a v e up c u s t o d y f o r t h e b e n e f i t o f h e r c h i l d r e n , c ) s h e b e l i e v e d t h a t h e r c h i l d r e n w e r e b e t t e r o f f l i v i n g w i t h t h e i r f a t h e r , d ) s h e a c c e p t e d some r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r t h e m a r i t a l b r e a k - u p , e ) she d i d n o t e x p e r i e n c e a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e i n h e r f i n a n c i a l s t a t u s f o l l o w i n g h e r m a r i t a l s e p a r a t i o n , a n d f ) s h e d i d n o t h a v e a s t r o n g r e l i g i o u s a f f i l i a t i o n . G r e i f c o n c l u d e d t h a t m o t h e r s who w e r e c o m f o r t a b l e i n t h e i r n o n - c u s t o d i a l r o l e w e r e a l s o s a t i s f i e d w i t h t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h t h e i r c h i l d r e n , a n d d i d n o t f e e l g u i l t . A d d i t i o n a l l y , G r e i f p o s t u l a t e d t h a t i f n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s r e d e f i n e t h e i r r o l e a s m o t h e r s , t h e y a r e b e t t e r a b l e t o a d a p t t o t h e i r new s i t u a t i o n . A l t h o u g h D o u d n a ( 1 9 8 2 ) d i d n o t c o n d u c t a r e s e a r c h s t u d y , s h e d i d make s e v e r a l a s s e r t i o n s r e g a r d i n g n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . F o r e x a m p l e , s h e c l a i m e d t h a t m o t h e r s who g i v e up c u s t o d y a r e h i g h l y d i s a p p r o v e d o f b e c a u s e t h e y h a v e c h a l l e n g e d wha t i s , t o m a n y , a f u n d a m e n t a l t e n e t i n s o c i e t y . A d d i t i o n a l l y , s h e p r o p o s e d t h a t t h e n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r ' s a d j u s t m e n t r e f l e c t s many v a r i a b l e s , i n c l u d i n g t h e a g e o f t h e c h i l d r e n a t t h e t i m e o f s e p a r a t i o n , a s w e l l a s t h e m o t h e r ' s s u c c e s s f u l e s t a b l i s h m e n t o f a new r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h h e r c h i l d r e n . M o s t i m p o r t a n t , h o w e v e r , 19 suggested Doudna, i s the degree to which n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers are a b l e to f i n d f u l f i l l m e n t in t h e i r new l i f e . Three of the rev iewed a r t i c l e s were w r i t t e n by women who d e s c r i b e d t h e i r p e r s o n a l expe r i ence s as n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers, and a l l had one common theme; they e x p e r i e n c e d nega t i ve judgment from o the r s rega rd ing t h e i r d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . One of these women ( S u l l i v a n , 1979), in d e s c r i b i n g the d i f f i c u l t i e s she encountered as a mother l i v i n g apar t from her c h i l d r e n , s t r e s s e d the importance of r e j e c t i n g s o c i e t y ' s t r a d i t i o n a l image of motherhood, wh i le r e d e f i n i n g the mother ing r o l e in new ways. In a d d i t i o n , she wrote that an event tha t he lped her to ga in c o n f i d e n c e and to r e c o g n i z e her inner s t r e n g t h was to appear on a t e l e v i s e d i n t e r v i e w program, sha r i n g her expe r i ence s as a n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother. In another a r t i c l e , Hous t l e (1979) d i s c u s s e d her i n a b i l i t y to cope w i th the nega t i ve c r i t i c i s m from f ami l y and f r i e n d s r ega rd ing her d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody and con sequen t l y , she chose to "go c r a z y " r a t h e r than face the d e n i g r a t i o n from o t h e r s . Hous t l e p o i g n a n t l y i l l u s t r a t e d how "go ing c r a z y " seemed to be a more s o c i a l l y a c c e p t a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e than be ing p e r c e i v e d as a mother not wanting to r a i s e her c h i l d r e n . In a c co rd wi th S u l l i v a n ' s (1979) recommendation, Hous t le emphasized the importance of r e d e f i n i n g the mother r o l e . S t o l l (1985) a l s o d e s c r i b e d how d i s a p p r o v a l from o ther s was d i f f i c u l t f o r h e r . And, l i k e Doudna (1982), Hous t l e (1979), and S u l l i v a n (1979), S t o l l emphasized the importance of c l a r i f y i n g o n e ' s v a l ue s about mother ing i n s t e a d of i n t e r n a l i z i n g s o c i e t y ' s t r a d i t i o n a l b e l i e f s about t h i s r o l e . 20 In summary, the above s t u d i e s have many commona l i t i e s . The most s t r i k i n g i s the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s p e r c e p t i o n s of s o c i e t y ' s nega t i ve judgment toward them fo r r e l i n q u i s h i n g cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n (Doudna, 1982; F i s c h e r , 1983; F i s c h e r & Cardea, 1981; G r e i f , 1987; K e l l e r , 1975; K o e h l e r , 1982; Paskowicz, 1982; Rosenblum, 1986; S t o l l , 1985; S u l l i v a n , 1979; Todre s , 1978). T h i s f i n d i n g c o i n c i d e s w i th Rowlands' (1980) a s s e r t i o n tha t in many cases n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers s u f f e r from a st igma that n o n - c u s t o d i a l f a t h e r s u s u a l l y escape. A d d i t i o n a l l y , i n her book, Beyond Reason, Margaret Trudeau (1979) d e s c r i b e d how she was inundated w i th n e g a t i v e c r i t i c i s m from a l l s e c t o r s of s o c i e t y f o r her d e c i s i o n to l eave her husband and th ree c h i l d r e n . And even though she saw her c h i l d r e n r e g u l a r l y , she was s t i l l d e s c r i b e d by the media as a "ha rd and s e l f i s h c a r e e r g i r l , capab le of n e g l e c t i n g her c h i l d r e n " (p. 251). Fur thermore , she po in ted out tha t wh i le she was l a b e l e d n e g a t i v e l y , her husband "became the most famous s i n g l e f a t h e r in the wor ld and h i s p o p u l a r i t y r a t i n g rose 17 p e r c e n t . . . " (p. 249). S e v e r a l of the authors of the above s t u d i e s a l s o p o i n t e d out the pro found sense of l o s s and g r i e f some n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers e x p e r i e n c e as a r e s u l t of t h e i r l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n ( F i s c h e r , 1983; F i s c h e r & Cardea , 1982; H o u s t l e , 1979; K o e h l e r , 1982; Paskowicz, 1982; S t o l l , 1985, S u l l i v a n , 1979; Tod re s , 1978). G u i l t i s another common f a c t o r these women were found to expe r i ence due to t h e i r d e c i s i o n to r e l i n q u i s h cus tody (Koeh le r , 1982; Paskowicz, 1982; S u l l i v a n , 1979; Todre s , 1978). In a d d i t i o n , many of the au thor s of the above s t u d i e s agreed that the reasons g iven f o r r e l i n q u i s h i n g cus tody were v a r i e d and 21 unique and that most women gave s e v e r a l reasons f o r making t h i s d e c i s i o n ( F i s c h e r , 1983; K o e h l e r , 1982; Paskowicz, 1982; Rosenblum, 1984, 1986, T o d r e s , 1978). A l though the above s t u d i e s addressed many q u e s t i o n s rega rd ing the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n , c o n s p i c u o u s l y absent from t h i s l i t e r a t u r e review are s t u d i e s tha t s p e c i f i c a l l y i d e n t i f y the i n c i d e n t s which f a c i l i t a t e and h inder s u c c e s s f u l adjustment to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n . Though some of the au thor s d i s c u s s e d adjustment (Doudna, 1982; G r e i f , 1987; H o u s t l e , 1979; Paskowicz, 1982; S t o l l , 1985; S u l l i v a n , 1979), t h e i r f i n d i n g s were l i m i t e d in terms of the aim of t h i s s tudy . Doudna (1982), f o r example, o f f e r e d c o n j e c t u r e r a t h e r than s u b s t a n t i a l ev idence r e g a r d i n g the c o n d i t i o n s f a c i l i t a t i n g adjustment fo r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . Paskowicz (1982), on the other hand, i d e n t i f i e d on l y one reason r e p o r t e d by the women i n her study as f a c i l i t a t i n g ad jus tment , tha t i s , p o s i t i v e input and support from f r i e n d s and f a m i l y . A d d i t i o n a l l y , a l though Hous t l e (1979), S t o l l (1985), and S u l l i v a n (1979) advocated the r e d e f i n i t i o n of the mother ing r o l e as an e f f e c t i v e s t r a t e g y , t h i s recommendation r e s u l t e d from t h e i r own p e r s o n a l e x p e r i e n c e . G r e i f ' s (1987) study came c l o s e s t to t h i s r e s e a r c h , however, the methods of the two s t u d i e s d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y in approach . T h i s r e s e a r c h i s t h e r e f o r e unique because i t i n v o l v e d an i n - d e p t h i n t e r v i e w method used to i d e n t i f y the i n c i d e n t s which f a c i l i t a t e d and h i n d e r e d e f f e c t i v e adjustment f o r the 17 n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in t h i s s tudy . These r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s make a c o n t r i b u t i o n to under s tand ing the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s d i r e c t e x p e r i e n c e rega rd ing the adjustment p roces s from the 22 woman's p e r s p e c t i v e . Research E x p e c t a t i o n s S e v e r a l e x p e c t a t i o n s r e s u l t e d from the l i t e r a t u r e rev iew. I t was e x p e c t e d , f o r example, tha t the p a r t i c i p a n t s in the p re sen t study would r e p o r t what Paskowicz (1982) found w i th her s u b j e c t s , t ha t one c o n d i t i o n f a c i l i t a t i n g adjustment i s p o s i t i v e input from o t h e r s . Another expec t i on d e r i v e d from F i s c h e r ' s (1983), K o e h l e r ' s (1982), and Tod re s ' (1978) f i n d i n g s . A c c o r d i n g to these th ree r e s e a r c h e r s , a major d i f f i c u l t y tha t n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers e x p e r i e n c e i s nega t i ve judgment from o t h e r s r e g a r d i n g t h e i r d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Thus, i t was a n t i c i p a t e d that nega t i ve judgment from o the r s would be i d e n t i f i e d by the women i n t h i s s tudy . A d d i t i o n a l l y , i n a cco rd w i th K o e h l e r ' s (1982) and Tod re s ' (1978) r e s e a r c h r e s u l t s , i t was s p e c u l a t e d that the p a r t i c i p a n t s would i d e n t i f y g u i l t as a f a c t o r which a f f e c t e d t h e i r ad jus tment . And f i n a l l y , Doudna 's (1982) hypotheses tha t n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers ' e f f e c t i v e adjustment i s dependent on the degree to which they are ab le to s u c c e s s f u l l y e s t a b l i s h a new r e l a t i o n s h i p wi th t h e i r c h i l d r e n as w e l l as t h e i r a b i l i t y to e s t a b l i s h and f i n d f u l f i l l m e n t i n t h e i r new s i t u a t i o n was expected to be r e p o r t e d by the respondents in t h i s s tudy . 23 Research Assumptions Some r e s e a r c h assumptions r e s u l t e d from the l i t e r a t u r e review. These assumptions a r e : 1. There are experiences f a c i l i t a t i n g the s u c c e s s f u l adjustment of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers which can be i d e n t i f i e d and enumerated u s i n g the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t t echnique. 1a. The i n c i d e n t of having r e c e i v e d s u p p o r t i v e v e r b a l statements w i l l be r e p o r t e d by some p a r t i c i p a n t s . 1b. The establishment of a new r e l a t i o n s h i p with t h e i r c h i l d r e n w i l l be repo r t e d by some of the women i n the study. 1c. Some of the respondents w i l l r e p o r t a r e d e f i n i t i o n of t h e i r r o l e as mother. 2. There are experiences o c c u r r i n g i n the l i v e s of mothers who have r e l i n q u i s h e d custody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n which can be i d e n t i f i e d and enumerated using the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t technique which hinder the adjustment of these women. 2a. Some of the p a r t i c i p a n t s w i l l r e p o r t a negative judgment toward them from o t h e r s . 2b. The i n c i d e n t of not having enough money w i l l be rep o r t e d by some of the respondents. 2c. Some of the women w i l l r e p o rt a negative r e l a t i o n s h i p with t h e i r c h i l d r e n . 2d. Some of the respondents w i l l r e p o r t a sense of g u i l t f o r not l i v i n g with t h e i r c h i l d r e n . 24 Review of the C r i t i c a l I n c i den t Technique The data f o r t h i s r e s e a r c h were c o l l e c t e d through the use of the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t techn ique which was deve loped by F lanagan (1947, 1954). T h i s t echn ique grew out of r e s e a r c h conducted in the A v i a t i o n Psycho logy Program of the U n i t e d S t a te s Army A i r Fo r ce s d u r i n g World War II and i s an i n - d e p t h i n t e r v i e w method concerned w i th o b t a i n i n g s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s which f a c i l i t a t e or h inder some a im, in t h i s c a se , s u c c e s s f u l adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . F lanagan (1954) wrote t h a t , "The c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t techn ique c o n s i s t s of a se t of p rocedures f o r c o l l e c t i n g d i r e c t o b s e r v a t i o n s of human behav io r in such a way as to f a c i l i t a t e t h e i r p o t e n t i a l u s e f u l n e s s in s o l v i n g p r a c t i c a l problems and d e v e l o p i n g broad p s y c h o l o g i c a l p r i n c i p l e s " (p. 327) . The o b j e c t of the approach, a c c o r d i n g to F lanagan (1947), i s to o b t a i n f i r s t hand r e p o r t s d e s c r i b i n g a s i t u a t i o n in which success or f a i l u r e i s determined by s p e c i f i c r e p o r t e d causes . The va lue of the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t techn ique l i e s i n the deeper under s tand ing of the phenomena under i n v e s t i g a t i o n . That i s , "The i n t e r v i e w s i t u a t i o n permi t s much g r e a t e r depth than other methods of c o l l e c t i n g r e s e a r c h " (Borg and G a l l , 1983, p. 436). Fur thermore , F lanagan (1978) ma in ta ined that through t h i s r e s e a r c h approach the s u b j e c t s ' r e c a l l e d i n c i d e n t s p r o v i d e a r i c h and v a l u a b l e source of i n f o r m a t i o n . F lanagan (1954) a s s e r t e d tha t the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t techn ique produces a r e c o r d of s p e c i f i c behav io r s r e p o r t e d by those in the best p o s i t i o n to make judgments about the p a r t i c u l a r a c t i v i t y be ing i n v e s t i g a t e d . Consequent ly , through 25 t h i s method, the r e s e a r c h e r can a c q u i r e i n f o r m a t i o n tha t the respondent would norma l ly not r e v e a l under o ther c i r c u m s t a n c e s . A l though the c o l l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s r ep re sen t on l y raw data and do not a u t o m a t i c a l l y p r o v i d e s o l u t i o n s to prob lems, Cohen and Smith (1976) p o i n t e d out tha t i f hundreds of i n c i d e n t s d e s c r i b e what f a c i l i t a t e s and h i n d e r s an a c t i v i t y , i t p r o v i d e s a f u n c t i o n a l d e s c r i p t i o n of the important requ i rements f o r improv ing the task at hand. T h e r e f o r e , the c o l l e c t i o n and c l a s s i f i c a t i o n of the i n c i d e n t s make i t p o s s i b l e f o r the i n v e s t i g a t o r to fo rmula te the c r i t i c a l requ i rements of the a c t i v i t y . Andersson and N i l s s o n (1964), in t h e i r r e s e a r c h on the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t t e c h n i q u e , conc luded that i n f o r m a t i o n c o l l e c t e d by t h i s approach i s both r e l i a b l e and v a l i d . C o r r e s p o n d i n g l y , Mayeske, Harmon, and Gl ickman (1966) suggested tha t the i n f o r m a t i o n d e r i v e d from t h i s r e s e a r c h method i s r e l a t i v e l y f r e e from b i a s because i t i s based on a c t u a l e x p e r i e n c e . They a l s o p o i n t e d out tha t one of the pr imary va l ue s of the approach i s t ha t the i n f o r m a t i o n o b t a i n e d from the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s i s s p e c i f i c and r e l e v a n t t o the a c t i v i t y under i n v e s t i g a t i o n and that the i n c i d e n t s g i ve o p e r a t i o n a l e x p r e s s i o n to what he lp s and h i n d e r s the a c t i v i t y . In summary, the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t method i s an a p p r o p r i a t e means of a c h i e v i n g an i n - d e p t h under s tand ing of what, from the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s e x p e r i e n c e , f a c i l i t a t e s and h i nde r s s u c c e s s f u l adjustment to her s i t u a t i o n . 26 CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY Sample The sample in t h i s s tudy c o n s i s t e d of 17 women who v o l u n t a r i l y r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n to t h e i r ex- spouses and who were a l s o l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n fo r at l e a s t one y e a r . A c c o r d i n g to C o l a i z z i (1978), the necessary c r i t e r i a f o r s e l e c t i n g p a r t i c i p a n t s are " e x p e r i e n c e w i th the i n v e s t i g a t e d t o p i c and a r t i c u l a t e n e s s " (p. 58 ) . Thus, two of the c r i t e r i a fo r s e l e c t i o n of p a r t i c i p a n t s were e x p e r i e n c e as a n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother and the a b i l i t y to i n t e l l i g e n t l y communicate about the e x p e r i e n c e . The sample a l s o i n c l u d e d women who were l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n f o r at l e a s t one yea r , the assumption being that women who r e l i n q u i s h e d cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n at l e a s t one year p r i o r to the i n t e r v i e w had a time p e r s p e c t i v e enab l i n g them to t a l k about t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e more o b j e c t i v e l y . Women who had s e p a r a t i o n from t h e i r c h i l d r e n imposed on them were exc luded from t h i s r e s e a r c h study because they may not have had the same types of i s s ue s to d e a l w i th as mothers who v o l u n t a r i l y r e l i n q u s i h e d custody to the f a t h e r . That i s , v o l u n t a r i l y and i n v o l u n t a r i l y r e l i n q u i s h i n g cus tody of one ' s c h i l d r e n very l i k e l y produces d i s t i n c t l y d i f f e r e n t e x p e r i e n c e s ( G r e i f , 1987). T h e r e f o r e , on l y those women who v o l u n t a r i l y r e l i n q u i s h e d custody were i n c l u d e d in the sample. A d d i t i o n a l l y , mothers w i th j o i n t - c u s t o d y were omi t ted because shared and 27 j o i n t - c u s t o d y l i k e l y r e s u l t s in d i s s i m i l a r e x p e r i e n c e s . Some of the women i n t h i s sample, a l though they chose to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n , d i d not l e g a l l y r e l i n q u i s h cu s tody . These women were i n c l u d e d in the sample because i t was b e l i e v e d that t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s would be s i m i l a r to the mothers i n the sample who l e g a l l y r e l i n q u i s h e d custody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . T h e r e f o r e , f o r the purpose of t h i s paper , the term n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother r e f e r s to a l l mothers who chose to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Fur thermore , the i n v e s t i g a t o r d e c i d e d to focus e x c l u s i v e l y on women whose c h i l d r e n were l i v i n g w i th t h e i r ex-spouses because n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers would l i k e l y have reasonab le acce s s to c h i l d r e n l i v i n g w i th t h e i r f a t h e r s than i f l i v i n g w i th someone e l s e . S e l e c t i n g respondents proved to be d i f f i c u l t because the re was no o r gan i zed group of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers i n the Vancouver or su r round ing a rea that c o u l d be drawn from. T h e r e f o r e , one avenue u t i l i z e d to ga in acces s to the sample was through word of mouth. That i s , the r e s e a r c h e r f a m i l i a r i z e d f r i e n d s and c o l l e a g u e s of her i n t e r e s t in i n t e r v i e w i n g mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , a cce s s to these women was ga ined by p u t t i n g n o t i c e s on l o c a l b u l l e t i n boards (community c e n t r e s , l i b r a r i e s , u n i v e r s i t i e s , and women's c e n t r e s ) in the Vancouver a rea (Appendix A ) . As w e l l , an adver t i sement was p l a c e d in K i n e s i s , a l o c a l newspaper sponsored by the Vancouver S t a tu s of Women. O r i g i n a l l y , the r e s e a r c h e r hoped to ob ta in a sample of 25 women. However, due to the d i f f i c u l t y in a c q u i r i n g p a r t i c i p a n t s , a t o t a l of 17 n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers were ob ta i ned f o r the s tudy . 28 A l l p a r t i c i p a n t s were sc reened to ensure tha t they f u l f i l l e d the requ i rements f o r i n c l u s i o n i n t h i s s tudy . A d d i t i o n a l l y , demographic data were c o l l e c t e d and r e p o r t e d fo r each respondent in order to d e s c r i b e the sample who v o l u n t e e r e d (Appendices G and H) . Background of P a r t i c i p a n t s The r e s e a r c h was conducted wi th 17 women, rang ing i n age from 32 to 49 y e a r s , w i th an average age of 38 y e a r s . The median annua l income f o r t h i s group was $12,100, rang ing from $7,000 to $40,000. Occupat ions r e p r e s e n t e d were nur se , p h y s i o t h e r a p i s t , c o u n s e l l o r , r e s e a r c h c o o r d i n a t o r , r e s e a r c h a s s i s t a n t , a ccoun tan t , s e c r e t a r y , r e c e p t i o n i s t , w a i t r e s s , and a r t i s t . S e v e r a l p a r t i c i p a n t s were s tudent s and one p a r t i c i p a n t was unemployed at the time the i n t e r v i e w o c c u r r e d . Over t h r e e - q u a r t e r s (76.5%) of the sample had a t tended c o l l e g e , u n i v e r s i t y or r e c e i v e d s p e c i a l t r a i n i n g . These women had, on average , two c h i l d r e n each . S ix of the seventeen women were s tudents and f i f t e e n were working e i t h e r f u l l or p a r t - t i m e . A d d i t i o n a l l y , 15 of the 17, or about e i g h t y - e i g h t pe rcen t (88.2%), had been or were c u r r e n t l y i n v o l v e d in p e r s o n a l therapy and over h a l f (53.3%) of them s t a t e d that the focus of t h e i r therapy was to h e l p them a d j u s t to l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Thus, about f i f t y - t h r e e pe rcen t (53.3%) of the p a r t i c i p a n t s in t h i s study sought a mental h e a l t h p r o f e s s i o n a l to h e l p them i n the adjustment p r o c e s s . T h i s rough ly cor responds w i th Paskowicz ' (1982) sample of women, where s i x t y percent (60.0%) were 29 i d e n t i f i e d as seek ing p r o f e s s i o n a l h e l p wi th ad jus tment . These f i g u r e s c o n t r a s t w i th K i e f e r ' s (1979) and the I n t e r n a t i o n a l Year of D i s a b l e d Per sons ' (1981) e s t ima te that about ten percen t of peop le in the g e n e r a l p o p u l a t i o n need some form of menta l h e a l t h s e r v i c e s . Only 4 of the 17 women or about twenty - f ou r percent (23.5%) were e i t h e r r e - m a r r i e d or l i v i n g w i th someone s i n c e s e p a r a t i n g from t h e i r husbands. Of these four women, on ly two or about twelve percen t (11.8%) r e - m a r r i e d . T h i s c o n t r a s t s to the 1985 n a t i o n a l average of about t h i r t y - s i x percent (36.4%) r e - m a r r y i n g a f t e r d i v o r c e ( S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 1986). However, the percentage of women in t h i s study r e - m a r r y i n g or e n t e r i n g a common-law r e l a t i o n s h i p (23.5%) co r re sponds w i th the percentage of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in Tod re s ' (1978) sample who r e - m a r r i e d or en te red a common-law r e l a t i o n s h i p (21.0%). P i l o t Study The p i l o t s tudy was conducted to determine whether or not the p a r t i c i p a n t s were ab le to r e c a l l i n c i d e n t s tha t were c r i t i c a l to t h e i r ad jus tment . A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h i s phase of the r e s e a r c h was employed to t e s t the i n t e r v i e w s t r u c t u r e . Two women v o l u n t e e r e d to p a r t i c i p a t e . One was a n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother, wh i l e the o ther was a woman w i th j o i n t - c u s t o d y . N e i t h e r of these two women were i n c l u d e d in the sample s e l e c t e d to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the r e s e a r c h s tudy. The w i l l i n g n e s s and a b i l i t y of the respondents to r e c a l l and r e l a t e the e x p e r i e n c e s that f a c i l i t a t e d and h i nde red t h e i r adjustment was demonstrated in the p i l o t s tudy . A d d i t i o n a l l y , i t was found that the i n t e r v i e w 30 s t r u c t u r e , w i t h some m i n o r a d j u s t m e n t s , was e f f e c t i v e . D a t a C o l l e c t i o n O n c e t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s w e r e s e l e c t e d , e a c h was c o n t a c t e d by t e l e p h o n e t o i n f o r m them a b o u t t h e i n t e r v i e w . S p e c i f i c a l l y , t h e y w e r e t o l d t h a t t h e y w o u l d be r e q u e s t e d t o i d e n t i f y , f r o m t h e i r own e x p e r i e n c e , wha t h e l p e d a n d h i n d e r e d t h e m i n t e r m s o f a d j u s t i n g t o l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . I n a d d i t i o n , t h e y w e r e t o l d t h a t t h e i r 0 p a r t i c i p a t i o n was v o l u n t a r y , t h a t a p p r o x i m a t e l y one h o u r o f t h e i r t i m e w o u l d be r e q u i r e d f o r t h e i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r v i e w s , a n d t h a t t h e i n t e r v i e w w o u l d be a u d i o t a p e r e c o r d e d s o t h a t t h e r e s e a r c h e r w o u l d h a v e a n a c c u r a t e a c c o u n t o f w h a t t h e y h a d t o s a y . D u r i n g t h i s t e l e p h o n e c o n v e r s a t i o n , t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r d e s c r i b e d t h e m e t h o d o l o g y u s e d f o r t h e s t u d y a n d b r i e f l y d e t a i l e d wha t w o u l d be a s k e d o f t h e p a r t i c i p a n t d u r i n g t h e i n t e r v i e w s e s s i o n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s w e r e e n c o u r a g e d t o a s k a n y q u e s t i o n s o f c l a r i f i c a t i o n d u r i n g t h i s t i m e . A n d f i n a l l y , a n i n t e r v i e w t i m e was a r r a n g e d . A l l i n t e r v i e w s w e r e c o n d u c t e d d u r i n g t h e s p r i n g a n d summer o f 1 9 8 6 . E a c h i n t e r v i e w o p e n e d w i t h a b r i e f i n t r o d u c t i o n , f o l l o w e d by a r e q u e s t o f t h e r e s p o n d e n t t o r e a d a n d s i g n a c o n s e n t f o r m ( A p p e n d i x B ) . The i n t e r v i e w e r b e g a n e a c h i n t e r v i e w w i t h a s t a n d a r d p r e a m b l e a s s t a t e d b e l o w : "Some t h i n g s seem t o work b e t t e r t h a n o t h e r s i n h e l p i n g women who a r e l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n a d j u s t t o t h i s s i t u a t i o n . By s h a r i n g y o u r e x p e r i e n c e s , y o u w i l l h e l p t o i d e n t i f y t h e f a c i l i t a t i v e a n d h i n d e r i n g c o n d i t i o n s a f f e c t i n g a d j u s t m e n t f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s . I am i n t e r e s t e d i n 31 l e a r n i n g wha t t h i n g s , f r o m y o u r p o i n t o f v i e w , f a c i l i t a t e d y o u i n a d j u s t i n g t o y o u r s i t u a t i o n a n d wha t t h i n g s h i n d e r e d y o u r a d j u s t m e n t . " F o l l o w i n g t h e p r e a m b l e , t h e r e s p o n d e n t was a b l e t o a s k a n y q u e s t i o n s s h e h a d r e g a r d i n g t h e s t u d y . The i n t e r v i e w p r o c e e d e d f o l l o w i n g t h e p r e a m b l e . I t i n v o l v e d a s e r i e s o f o p e n - e n d e d q u e s t i o n s i n t e n d e d t o h e l p e x p l o r e t h e r e s p o n d e n t ' s e x p e r i e n c e a s f u l l y a s p o s s i b l e . A s t h e p a r t i c i p a n t r e s p o n d e d t o t h e i n t e r v i e w q u e s t i o n s , t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r a b i d e d b y t h e f o l l o w i n g g u i d e l i n e s a s d e f i n e d by F l a n a g a n ( 1 9 5 4 ) : " T h e i n t e r v i e w e r s h o u l d a v o i d a s k i n g l e a d i n g q u e s t i o n s a f t e r t h e m a i n q u e s t i o n h a s b e e n s t a t e d . H i s r e m a r k s s h o u l d be n e u t r a l a n d p e r m i s s i v e a n d show t h a t he a c c e p t s t h e o b s e r v e r a s e x p e r t . By i n d i c a t i n g t h a t he u n d e r s t a n d s wha t i s b e i n g s a i d a n d p e r m i t t i n g t h e o b s e r v e r t o do m o s t o f t h e t a l k i n g , t h e i n t e r v i e w e r c a n u s u a l l y g e t u n b i a s e d i n c i d e n t s " ( p . 3 4 2 ) . A f t e r t h e p a r t i c i p a n t r e s p o n d e d f u l l y t o t h e i n t e r v i e w e r ' s q u e s t i o n s , t h e i n t e r v i e w e r a s k e d i f t h e r e s p o n d e n t c o u l d r e c a l l a n o t h e r i n c i d e n t a n d i f t h i s was t h e c a s e , t h e p r o c e s s was r e p e a t e d . The I n t e r v i e w A s n o t e d e a r l i e r , t h e i n t e r v i e w was p r o j e c t e d t o be a p p r o x i m a t e l y one h o u r i n l e n g t h . H o w e v e r , t h e a c t u a l i n t e r v i e w s r a n g e d f r o m two t o f o u r h o u r s i n l e n g t h . T h i s was d u e , i n p a r t , t o t h e s e n s i t i v e n a t u r e o f t h e i n t e r v i e w m a t e r i a l , a s w e l l a s a l l o w i n g e a c h i n t e r v i e w e e t o f u l l y e x p r e s s t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s . The i n t e r v i e w p r o t o c o l p r o c e e d e d a s f o l l o w s : 32 I n t r o d u c t i o n " I am g o i n g t o r e a d t h i s a l o u d a s y o u r e a d a l o n g . The r e a s o n i s t h a t a l l p a r t i c i p a n t s w i l l a p p r o a c h t h e i n t e r v i e w i n t h e same w a y . " " I am i n t e r e s t e d i n f i n d i n g o u t wha t s p e c i f i c t h i n g s y o u d i d o r o t h e r s d i d t h a t h e l p e d y o u t o a d j u s t t o y o u r s i t u a t i o n a s a m o t h e r l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m y o u r c h i l d r e n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , I w o u l d l i k e t o f i n d o u t wha t s p e c i f i c t h i n g s y o u d i d o r o t h e r s d i d t h a t made a d j u s t m e n t d i f f i c u l t f o r y o u . " F a c i l i t a t i n g I n c i d e n t s " W e ' l l s t a r t w i t h t h e t h i n g s t h a t s i g n i f i c a n t l y h e l p e d y o u t o a d j u s t . T h i n k b a c k t o a t i m e when s o m e t h i n g h a p p e n e d t h a t s i g n i f i c a n t l y h e l p e d y o u t o a d j u s t t o y o u r s i t u a t i o n . Be a s s p e c i f i c a s p o s s i b l e a n d a s d e t a i l e d a s p o s s i b l e . T a k e a s much t i m e a s y o u n e e d t o t h i n k o f a s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t a n d when y o u h a v e a n i n c i d e n t c l e a r l y i n m i n d , l e t me k n o w . " F o l l o w - U p Q u e s t i o n s A f t e r t h e r e s p o n d e n t r e c a l l e d t h e i n c i d e n t , t h e f o l l o w i n g q u e s t i o n s w e r e a s k e d : a . What w e r e t h e g e n e r a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s l e a d i n g up t o t h e i n c i d e n t ? b . How l o n g a f t e r y o u s t o p p e d l i v i n g w i t h y o u r c h i l d r e n d i d t h e i n c i d e n t o c c u r ? c . What e x a c t l y h a p p e n e d t h a t was s o h e l p f u l t o y o u a t t h a t t i m e ? d . What was i t a b o u t t h e i n c i d e n t t h a t s p e c i f i c a l l y h e l p e d y o u ? 33 e. What changed f o r you through the i n c i d e n t ? f . I f another person i s i n v o l v e d , what i s t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p to you? g. Can you think of another i n c i d e n t t hat s i g n i f i c a n t l y helped you to a d j u s t . Again, take as much time as you need and when you have a s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t i n mind, l e t me know. The above procedure was repeated u n t i l the respondent c o u l d not th i n k of any new i n c i d e n t s that helped her a d j u s t to her s i t u a t i o n . A f t e r each i n c i d e n t was r e c a l l e d , the same seven follow-up q u e s t i o n s c i t e d above were asked. H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s "Now I'd l i k e you to t h i n k of a s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t that made adjustment f o r you s i g n i f i c a n t l y more d i f f i c u l t . In as much d e t a i l as p o s s i b l e d e s c r i b e an i n c i d e n t that hindered your adjustment. Take as much time as you need to thin k of an i n c i d e n t and l e t me know when you are ready." Follow-Up Questions A f t e r the p a r t i c i p a n t r e c a l l e d the i n c i d e n t the seven fol l o w - u p q u e s t i o n s as c i t e d above were asked. F o l l o w i n g the i n t e r v i e w , the p a r t i c i p a n t was given a demographic q u e s t i o n n a i r e to complete (Appendix C ) . 34 C r i t e r i a C h e c k P e r h a p s o n e o f t h e m o s t s e r i o u s p r o b l e m s e n c o u n t e r e d when u s i n g t h e c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t m e t h o d , a c c o r d i n g t o B o r g a n d G a l l ( 1 9 8 3 ) , i s t o o b t a i n i n c i d e n t s t h a t a r e t r u l y c r i t i c a l . To i n s u r e e a c h r e p o r t e d i n c i d e n t was i n f a c t c r i t i c a l , e a c h i n c i d e n t was g i v e n a c r i t e r i a c h e c k . An i n c i d e n t was c o n s i d e r e d t o be c r i t i c a l i f t h e r e s p o n d e n t c o u l d r e c a l l , i n s u f f i c i e n t d e t a i l , wha t i t was a b o u t t h e e x p e r i e n c e t h a t f a c i l i t a t e d o r h i n d e r e d h e r a d j u s t m e n t . T h e r e f o r e , d u r i n g t h e i n t e r v i e w , t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r a p p l i e d t h e c r i t e r i a c h e c k s ( f o l l o w - u p q u e s t i o n s ) t o t h e i n c i d e n t s . The c r i t e r i a w e r e : a . A l l r e l e v a n t f a c t o r s i n t h e s i t u a t i o n w e r e s o u g h t . b . The r e s p o n d e n t made a d e f i n i t e j u d g m e n t a s t o t h e c r i t i c a l n e s s o f t h e b e h a v i o r . c . The p a r t i c i p a n t made i t c l e a r why s h e b e l i e v e d t h e b e h a v i o r t o be c r i t i c a l ( F l a n a g a n , 1 9 5 4 ) . I n t e r v i e w e r C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s The i n f o r m a t i o n i n t h i s s t u d y , c o l l e c t e d t h r o u g h F l a n a g a n ' s c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t i n t e r v i e w a p p r o a c h , a l l o w e d t h e p a r t i c i p a n t t o g i v e s e l f r e p o r t s a b o u t h e r e x p e r i e n c e a s a m o t h e r l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m h e r c h i l d r e n . B e c a u s e o f t h e s e n s i t i v e n a t u r e o f t h e m a t e r i a l , some r e s p o n d e n t s may h a v e f o u n d t h e i n t e r v i e w t o be t h r e a t e n i n g . T h e r e f o r e , t h e i n t e r v i e w e r a t t e m p t e d t o make t h e i n t e r v i e w s i t u a t i o n a s n o n - t h r e a t e n i n g a s p o s s i b l e . B e f o r e t h e a c t u a l i n t e r v i e w b e g a n , f o r e x a m p l e , t h e i n t e r v i e w e r s p e n t a l i t t l e t i m e e s t a b l i s h i n g r a p p o r t w i t h t h e 35 p a r t i c i p a n t a n d a n s w e r e d a n y q u e s t i o n s s h e h a d . A d d i t i o n a l l y , b y u s i n g t h e i n t e r v i e w e r s k i l l s o f a t t e n t i v e b e h a v i o r , e m p a t h i c l i s t e n i n g a n d n o n - e v a l u a t i v e l a n g u a g e , a s w e l l a s d e m o n s t r a t i n g r e s p e c t , s u p p o r t a n d a c c e p t a n c e , t h e p a r t i c i p a n t h o p e f u l l y f e l t a s e n s e o f t r u s t a n d o p e n n e s s i n s h a r i n g h e r e x p e r i e n c e s . F u r t h e r m o r e , s i n c e t h e i n t e r v i e w e r i s a n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r , h e r own b a c k g r o u n d a n d s h a r e d e x p e r i e n c e s n o t o n l y f a c i l i t a t e d a d e e p e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h a n m i g h t o t h e r w i s e h a v e o c c u r r e d , b u t b y d i s c l o s i n g h e r s t a t u s , t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s f e l t a s e n s e o f a c c e p t a n c e f o r t h e d e c i s i o n t h e y made t o l i v e a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . D a t a A n a l y s i s An a n a l y s i s o f t h e c o l l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s a l l o w e d t h e i n v e s t i g a t o r t o f o r m u l a t e t h e c r i t i c a l r e q u i r e m e n t s o f t h e a c t i v i t y . T h i s p r o c e s s f o l l o w e d t h e c o m p l e t i o n o f t h e i n t e r v i e w when t h e i n c i d e n t s w e r e s u m m a r i z e d f r o m t h e a u d i o t a p e r e c o r d i n g s . D a t a a n a l y s i s i n v o l v e d e x a m i n i n g t h e i n c i d e n t s f o r s i m i l a r i t i e s a n d common f a c t o r s . The o b j e c t i v e , a c c o r d i n g t o F l a n a g a n ( 1 9 5 4 ) , i s t o s u m m a r i z e a n d d e s c r i b e t h e d a t a i n a c o n c i s e , e f f i c i e n t m a n n e r , i n o r d e r t o i n c r e a s e t h e u s e f u l n e s s o f t h e d a t a w h i l e s a c r i f i c i n g a s l i t t l e a s p o s s i b l e o f i t s c o m p r e h e n s i v e n e s s , s p e c i f i c i t y a n d v a l i d i t y . The f i r s t s t e p i n d a t a a n a l y s i s was c l a s s i f i c a t i o n o f t h e i n c i d e n t s . T h i s p r o c e s s i n c l u d e d g r o u p i n g t h e i n c i d e n t s i n t o c a t e g o r i e s a n d f o r m u l a t i n g d e s c r i p t i v e s t a t e m e n t s r e p r e s e n t i n g t h e s e g r o u p s . A m a j o r p r o b l e m i n t h e c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s y s t e m was t h e i m p o r t a n c e o f c o n s i d e r i n g how g e n e r a l o r s p e c i f i c t h e 36 c a t e g o r i e s shou ld be. The aim was to determine the op t ima l ba lance between the genera l and the s p e c i f i c . Woolsey (1986) p o i n t e d out that the l e v e l of g e n e r a l i t y i s e s t a b l i s h e d by the headings and sub -head ings . Fur thermore , F lanagan (1954) wrote tha t the problem c o n s i s t s of "we igh ing the advantages of s p e c i f i c i t y a ch ieved in s p e c i f i c i n c i d e n t s a ga in s t the s i m p l i c i t y of a r e l a t i v e l y sma l l e r number of g e n e r a l head ings " (p. 345). T h e r e f o r e , when s e l e c t i n g ca tego ry head ings , the f o l l o w i n g g u i d e l i n e s , proposed by F lanagan (1954), were found to be u s e f u l . a . Headings and requ i rements must be c l e a r - c u t , l o g i c a l l y o r gan i zed and e a s i l y d i s c e r n a b l e w i th an e a s i l y remembered s t r u c t u r e . b. T i t l e s r e q u i r e meanings in themselves without d e t a i l e d d e f i n i t i o n s . c . Headings f o r major a reas shou ld be homogenous, p a r a l l e l in content and s t r u c t u r e and they should be n e u t r a l . d . Headings must be of the same type and l e v e l of importance. e. Headings shou ld f a c i l i t a t e f i n d i n g s be ing e a s i l y a p p l i e d and maximal ly u s e f u l . f . The l i s t of headings needs to be comprehens ive, c o v e r i n g a l l i n c i d e n t s . Keeping these g u i d e l i n e s i n mind, the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s were summarized from the taped i n t e r v i e w s onto index c a r d s , w i th one i n c i d e n t per c a r d . Each c a r d was l a b e l e d w i th a summary of the i n c i d e n t , approximate date the i n c i d e n t o c c u r r e d , and a 37 s e q u e n t i a l i d e n t i f i c a t i o n number was a s s i g n e d t o e a c h i n c i d e n t . B e c a u s e t h e c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s c o n t a i n e d d i v e r s e i n f o r m a t i o n , t h e y w e r e w r i t t e n w i t h more c o n c i s e n e s s a n d c l a r i t y . W h i l e i t i s p o s s i b l e t o l o s e some i n f o r m a t i o n i n t h i s p r o c e s s , t h e r e i s no r e a s o n t o b e l i e v e a n y e s s e n t i a l i n f o r m a t i o n was r e m o v e d ( s e e A p p e n d i x F f o r e x a m p l e s o f f u l l - l e n g t h i n c i d e n t s a n d t h e i r s i m p l i f i e d c o u n t e r p a r t s ) . The f o l l o w i n g p r o c e s s i l l u s t r a t e s t h e p r o g r e s s i o n e m p l o y e d i n t h e s u m m a r i z a t i o n o f e a c h i n c i d e n t . F i r s t , t h e f u l l - l e n g t h i n c i d e n t was l i s t e n e d t o i n o r d e r t o a c q u i r e a n i m p r e s s i o n o f i t s e s s e n c e . N e x t , t h e a n s w e r s t o t h e f o l l o w - u p q u e s t i o n s w e r e e x t r a c t e d a n d s u m m a r i z e d . To a s s i s t i n c l a r i f y i n g t h e i n c i d e n t f u r t h e r , t h e a g e n t , o r whomever was r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h e i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g , a n d t h e s o u r c e , o r w h a t , i n p a r t i c u l a r , was h e l p f u l o r h i n d e r i n g a b o u t t h e i n c i d e n t , was i d e n t i f i e d . A n d f i n a l l y , f r o m t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n , t h e i n c i d e n t was s u m m a r i z e d o n t o i n d e x c a r d s . A f t e r a l l i n c i d e n t s w e r e s u m m a r i z e d i n t h i s w a y , t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f t h e c a t e g o r y s y s t e m b e g a n . The f i r s t s t e p i n t h e c a t e g o r y f o r m u l a t i o n was t o e x a m i n e e a c h i n c i d e n t , n o t i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s a n d common e l e m e n t s . The s e c o n d s t e p was t o u n d e r t a k e a t r i a l c l a s s i f i c a t i o n . A s m a l l s a m p l e o f t h e . i n c i d e n t s was s o r t e d , p l a c i n g i n c i d e n t s t h a t s eemed s i m i l a r t o g e t h e r . F o l l o w i n g t h i s m e a s u r e , t h e r e s e a r c h e r b r i e f l y d e f i n e d t h e s e c a t e g o r i e s a n d c o n t i n u e d t o c l a s s i f y a d d i t i o n a l i n c i d e n t s i n t o t h e m . The c a t e g o r i e s w e r e t h e n r e v i e w e d a n d r e f i n e d u n t i l a l l t h e i n c i d e n t s d e s c r i b i n g s i m i l a r e x p e r i e n c e s w e r e p l a c e d i n t h e same s u b - c a t e g o r y h e a d i n g s . The d e f i n i t i o n s 38 f o r a l l c a t e g o r i e s were re-examined i n terms of a c t u a l i n c i d e n t s p l a c e d in each , and t h i s p roces s was repeated u n t i l the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n system was comp le te . S e v e r a l c y c l e s were r e q u i r e d to deve lop s a t i s f a c t o r y c a t e g o r i e s f o r the i n c i d e n t s . The re f inement of the c a t e g o r i e s was an ongoing p roces s as each review of the ca tegory ca rd s r e s u l t e d i n some ca tegory r e d e f i n i t i o n s . F i n a l l y , a f t e r s e v e r a l rev iews , i t became c l e a r tha t the i n c i d e n t ca rd s were in t h e i r c o r r e c t c a t e g o r i e s and tha t the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n system was complete . Rater R e l i a b i l i t y The method of data a n a l y s i s c o n s i s t e d of deve l op ing a ca tegory system i n d u c t i v e l y and then check ing i t s r e l i a b i l i t y by de te rm in ing how c o n s i s t e n t l y r a t e r s p l a c e d the i n c i d e n t s i n t o the s u p e r o r d i n a t e and subord ina te c a t e g o r i e s (see Appendix I f o r r a t e r r e l i a b i l i t y s c o r e s ) . Because d e c i s i o n s made in the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n p roces s were s u b j e c t i v e judgments, the system was submit ted to four independent r a t e r s f o r rev iew. The r a t e r s were t r a i n e d i n the ca tegory system and were asked to c a t e g o r i z e the s e l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s (1 ) . The percent of a c c u r a t e p lacements p r o v i d e d the measure of r e l i a b i l i t y , and a mimimum of seventy percent (70%) agreement between each r a t e r ' s c a tego ry p lacements and those of the r e s e a r c h e r ' s f o r the s u b - c a t e g o r i e s and e i g h t y - f i v e pe rcen t (85%) agreement f o r the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s (Woolsey, 1986) was s e t . Rater A was a 39 year o l d male, w i th 3 year s u n i v e r s i t y t r a i n i n g in the S o c i a l S c i e n c e s . He r e c e i v e d e x t e n s i v e t r a i n i n g in how to c a t e g o r i z e the i n c i d e n t s . Rater B was a 32 year o l d 39 female and advanced student i n C o u n s e l l i n g P sycho logy . She had t r a i n i n g in c o u n s e l l i n g and a n a l y t i c a l t e c h n i q u e s . Each of the f i r s t two r a t e r s a ch ieved s co re s of about n i n e t y - f o u r percent (94.1%) agreement wi th the r e s e a r c h e r ' s ca tegory p lacements fo r the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s and about e i g h t y - n i n e percent (88.7%) and n i n e t y - o n e pe rcen t (90.6%) r e s p e c t i v e l y f o r the subord ina te c a t e g o r i e s . A l though these scores i n d i c a t e a reasonab ly h i gh l e v e l of r e l i a b i l i t y f o r the ca tego ry system, the re were two m o d i f i c a t i o n s made to the system r e s u l t i n g from these r a t e r s ' c a t e g o r i z a t i o n . Both r a t e r s e x p e r i e n c e d some c o n f u s i o n when d i s t i n g u i s h i n g between the ca tego ry of ' I n c l u s i o n i n the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' and that of ' P a r e n t a l A d v i s o r ' . T h e r e f o r e , a f t e r examinat ion of t h i s a m b i g u i t y , i t was d e c i d e d tha t these two c a t e g o r i e s would be combined i n t o one, l a b e l e d , ' I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' . A d d i t i o n a l l y , the ca tego ry e n t i t l e d , 'Compensatory Behav i o r ' was changed to ' E v a s i v e Behav i o r ' because of the c o n f u s i o n both r a t e r s e x p e r i e n c e d r e s u l t i n g from that c a t e g o r y ' s t i t l e . Rater C was a 40 year o l d male with a degree in J o u r n a l i s m . He was working f o r a l o c a l newspaper and e x p e r i e n c e d at a n a l y z i n g m a t e r i a l . Rater D was a 39 year o l d female wi th a degree i n L i b r a r y Sc ience and was working as a c a t a l o g u e r . She t h e r e f o r e had t r a i n i n g and expe r i ence c a t a l o g u i n g and c l a s s i f y i n g m a t e r i a l . The second set of r a t e r s a c h i e v e d r e l i a b i l i t y s co re s of about n i n e t y - t w o percent (92.2%) and one-hundered pe rcen t (100%) r e s p e c t i v e l y f o r the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s and about 40 n i n e t y - t h r e e p e r c e n t (93.2%) and n i n e t y - f i v e p e r c e n t (95.1%) r e s p e c t i v e l y f o r the s u b o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s . These f i g u r e s suggest t h a t the c a t e g o r y system i s a r e l i a b l e r e f l e c t i o n of the r e p o r t e d i n c i d e n t s . 41 CHAPTER I V R E S U L T S I n t h i s c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s t u d y on wha t f a c i l i t a t e s a n d h i n d e r s e f f e c t i v e a d j u s t m e n t f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s , t h e 17 p a r t i c i p a n t s r e p o r t e d a t o t a l o f 212 i n c i d e n t s . Of t h e s e 212 i n c i d e n t s , 134 o r a b o u t s i x t y - t h r e e p e r c e n t ( 6 3 . 2 % ) w e r e f a c i l i t a t i v e a n d 78 o r a b o u t t h i r t y - s e v e n p e r c e n t ( 3 6 . 8 % ) w e r e h i n d e r i n g . F o l l o w i n g t h e c o m p l e t i o n o f t h e i n t e r v i e w s , t h e i n c i d e n t s w e r e s u m m a r i z e d f r o m t h e a u d i o t a p e r e c o r d i n g s o n t o i n d e x c a r d s . T h r o u g h a n i n d u c t i v e p r o c e s s o f g r a d u a l r e f i n e m e n t , a s e t o f 15 b a s i c o r s u b - c a t e g o r i e s e m e r g e d . T h e s e 15 s u b - c a t e g o r i e s w e r e g r o u p e d i n t o 3 m a j o r o r s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s ( s e e A p p e n d i c e s D a n d E f o r d e f i n i t i o n o f c a t e g o r i e s a n d T a b l e s 1 t o 5 f o r f r e q u e n c y a n d p e r c e n t a g e r a t e s o f t h e i n c i d e n t s p l a c e d w i t h i n e a c h c a t e g o r y ) . The 3 s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s a r e r e p r e s e n t e d w i t h roman n u m e r a l s a n d t h e 15 s u b o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s a r e r e p r e s e n t e d w i t h a r a b i c n u m e r a l s . The f r e q u e n c y a n d p e r c e n t a g e d i s t r i b u t i o n w i t h i n t h e t h r e e s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s a r e d i s p l a y e d i n T a b l e 1. 42 Tab le 1 Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th in Each Supero rd ina te Category Supe ro rd ina te Category F Percent (n=212 I n c i d e n t s ) I. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS 140 66.0 II. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS 49 23.1 I I I. EXTERNAL FACTORS 23 10.9 By f a r , the l a r g e s t of the th ree s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s was tha t of ' I n t e r p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' , w i th a lmost t w o - t h i r d s (66.0%) of a l l i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y . T h i s demonstrates the importance the p a r t i c i p a n t s p l a c e d on r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i th o ther s as s i g n i f i c a n t in a s s i s t i n g in t h e i r ad jus tment . The f r e q u e n c i e s and percentages f o r each f a c i l i t a t i n g sub -ca tegory p l a c e d w i t h i n each s u p e r o r d i n a t e ca tegory are i l l u s t r a t e d i n Tab le 2. 43 Tab le 2 Frequency and Percentage of F a c i l i t a t i v e C a t e g o r i e s W i th in Each Supero rd ina te Category F a c i l i t a t i v e C a t e g o r i e s F % W i th in Supero rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s I. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS 94 1 . S o c i a l Support 46 48.9 2. I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e 25 26.6 3. Reassurance C h i l d r e n are W e l l - C a r e d For 10 10.6 4. Regu lar Contact With the C h i l d r e n 8 8.5 5. A s s e r t i o n With Ex-Husband 5 5.3 II. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS 31 6. Acceptance of her Dec i s i on 1 5 48.4 7. Remin i s c i ng 6 19.4 8. E v a s i v e Behav ior 6 19.4 9. Expres sed Emotions 4 12.9 I I I. EXTERNAL FACTORS 9 10 . Having a Home that i s a Fami l y P l ace 9 100.0 As i n d i c a t e d in Tab le 2, ' S o c i a l Suppor t ' (48.9%) was r e p o r t e d more o f t e n than any o ther f a c i l i t a t i n g ca tegory w i t h i n the ' I n t e r p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' . With regard to the ' I n t r a p e r s o n a l 44 F a c t o r s ' , by f a r , the most f r e q u e n t l y c i t e d sub -ca tegory was ' Acceptance of her D e c i s i o n ' (48.4%). The f r e q u e n c i e s and percentages f o r each h i n d e r i n g sub -ca tegory p l a c e d w i t h i n each s u p e r o r d i n a t e ca tegory a re i l l u s t r a t e d in Tab le 3 below. Tab le 3 Frequency and Percentage of H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s W i th in Each Supero rd ina te Category H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s F % W i th in Supero rd ina te Category I. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS 46 1. Negat i ve Judgment/ Lack of S o c i a l Support 26 56.5 2. E x c l u s i o n From the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e 20 43.5 I I. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS 18 3. G u i l t 1 1 61 . 1 4. E v a s i v e Behav ior 7 38.9 I I I . EXTERNAL FACTORS 1 4 5. Pover ty 1 4 100.0 As i l l u s t r a t e d in Tab le 3, the h i n d e r i n g s u b - c a t e g o r i e s p l a c e d w i t h i n the ' I n t e r p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' c o n t a i n e d about equa l number of i n c i d e n t s , w i th 'Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Suppor t ' hav ing 56.5%, and ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' 4 5 hav ing 43.5%. In terms of the ' I n t r a p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' , ' G u i l t ' , w i th 61.1%, was r e p o r t e d most o f t e n as h i n d e r i n g ad jus tment . The f r e q u e n c i e s and percentages w i t h i n each f a c i l i t a t i v e sub - ca tego ry a re i l l u s t r a t e d in Tab le 4. Tab le 4 Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th in Each F a c i l i t a t i v e Subord ina te Category F a c i l i t a t i v e c a t e g o r i e s F % W i t h i n F a c i l i t a t i v e (n=134 f a c i l i t a t i v e i n c i d e n t s ) C a t e g o r i e s I. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS 94 1. S o c i a l Support 46 34.3 2. I n c l u s i o n in the 25 18.7 C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e 3. Reassurance C h i l d r e n 10 7.5 a re W e l l - C a r e d For 4. Regular Contact With 8 6C. 0 the C h i l d r e n 5. A s s e r t i o n With 5 3.7 Ex-Husband II. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS 31 6. Acceptance of her 15 11.2 D e c i s i o n 7. Remin i s c i ng 6 4.5 8. E v a s i v e Behav ior 6 4.5 9. Expres sed Emotions 4 3.0 I I I . EXTERNAL FACTORS 9 10. Having a Home that 9 6.7 i s a Fami ly P l ace 46 In Tab le 4 i t i s demonstrated t h a t ' S o c i a l Suppor t ' (34.3%) and ' I n c l u s i o n i n the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' (18.7%) were the two most o f t e n mentioned f a c i l i t a t i n g s u b - c a t e g o r i e s . The f r e q u e n c i e s and percentages w i t h i n each h i n d e r i n g sub -ca tegory a re d i s p l a y e d in Tab le 5 below. Tab le 5 Frequency and Percentage of I n c i d e n t s W i th in Each H i n d e r i n g Subord inate Category H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s (n=78 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s ) % W i th in H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s I. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS 46 1. Negat i ve Judgment/ 26 33.3 Lack of S o c i a l Support 2. E x c l u s i o n from the 20 25.6 C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e II. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS 18 3. G u i l t 11 14.1 4. E v a s i v e Behav ior 7 9.0 I I I. EXTERNAL FACTORS 14 5. Pover ty 14 18.0 In Tab le 5 i t i s demonstrated tha t 'Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Suppor t ' (33.3%) and ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' (25.6%) were the two most f r e q u e n t l y r e p o r t e d h i n d e r i n g sub -ca tegor i e s . 47 In Tab le 6 i s d i s p l a y e d who was i d e n t i f i e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g w i t h i n each f a c i l i t a t i v e s u b - c a t e g o r y . Tab le 6 Frequency and Percentage of Agent Respons ib le f o r F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i d e n t s F a c i l i t a t i v e C a t e g o r i e s Percentage 1 . SOCIAL SUPPORT A. From F r i e n d s B. From Fami ly C. From Others D. From C h i l d r e n E. From Ex-Husband 46 24 8 7 6 1 52.2 17.4 15.2 13.0 2.2 2. INCLUSION A. With C h i l d r e n B. By Ex-Husband C. C h i l d r e n wi th her Fami l y D. With C h i l d r e n ' s s c h o o l 25 1 2 6 4 48.0 24.0 16.0 12.0 3. REASSURANCE A. From C h i l d r e n B. From Ex-Husband C. From Fami ly D. From Others Tab le c o n t i n u e s 10 4 4 1 1 40.0 40.0 10.0 10.0 48 Tab le 6 ( cont inued) 4. REGULAR CONTACT 5. ASSERTION 6. ACCEPTANCE OF HER 15 DECISION 7. REMINISCING 6 A. With photographs 3 50.0 B. Re tu rn ing to 3 50.0 shared a c t i v i t y 8. EVASIVE BEHAVIOR 6 A. Through work 2 33.3 B. Through schoo l 2 33.3 C. Through l e i s u r e 1 16.7 a c t i v i t i e s D. S e l e c t i v e about who 1 16.7 she t a l k e d wi th about her s i t u a t i o n 9. EXPRESSED EMOTIONS 4 10. HAVING A HOME THAT IS A FAMILY PLACE In Tab le 6 i s demonstrated the overwhelming number of respondents r e p o r t i n g f r i e n d s (52.2%) as be ing s u p p o r t i v e , compared to the number r e p o r t i n g f am i l y (17.4%), or o ther s (15.2%) as be ing s u p p o r t i v e . A d d i t i o n a l l y , the p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d t h e i r c h i l d r e n (48.0%) more than anyone e l s e as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r i n c l u d i n g them i n t h e i r l i v e s . 49 In terms of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s , who was i d e n t i f i e d as be ing r e s p n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g i s shown in Tab le 7. Tab le 7 Frequency and Percentage of Agent Re spons ib l e f o r H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s F Percentage ' 1. NEGATIVE JUDGMENT/ 26 LACK OF SOCIAL SUPPORT A. From F r i e n d s 8 30.8 B. From Fami l y 8 30.8 C. From Ex-Husband 5 19.2 D. From Others 4 15.4 E. From C h i l d r e n 1 3.9 2. EXCLUSION FROM THE 20 CHILDREN'S L IFE A. By Ex-Husband 13 65.0 B. By C h i l d r e n 3 15.0 C. By Other s 3 15.0 D. By C h i l d r e n ' s 1 5.0 s choo l 3. GUILT 11 A. From C h i l d r e n 8 72.7 B. From S e l f 3 27.3 Tab le c o n t i n u e s 50 Tab le 7 (cont inued) 4. EVASIVE BEHAVIOR A. With F r i e n d s B. With C h i l d r e n C. With C h i l d r e n ' s s choo l 7 4 2 1 57. 1 28.6 14.3 5. POVERTY A. Unable to a f f o r d f o o d / c l o t h i n g / c o m f o r t a b l e apartment or home B. Unable to a f f o r d t r a n s p o r t a t i o n C. Unable to a f f o r d l e i s u r e a c t i v i t i e s w i th the C h i l d r e n D. Unable to a f f o r d t o l l c a l l s to the C h i l d r e n 1 4 6 42.9 28.6 14.3 14.3 ' Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l S u p p o r t ' , as d i s p l a y e d i n Tab le 7, was r e p o r t e d e q u a l l y among f r i e n d s (30.8%) and f am i l y (30.8%). Ex-husbands (65.0%) however, were r e p o r t e d to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r e x c l u d i n g her from the c h i l d r e n more o f t e n than anyone e l s e . Time Frame Data were c o l l e c t e d and ana l yzed r e g a r d i n g how long a f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n the i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d . I n c i den t s were r e p o r t e d to occur s t a r t i n g from be fo re the a c t u a l s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n up to 12 year s a f t e r w a r d s . The 51 term, ' immed ia te l y a f t e r ' , r e f e r s t o the time p e r i o d between the i n i t a l s e p a r a t i o n up to one month d f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n . The r e s u l t s a re r e p o r t e d in Tab le s 8, 9, and 10 below. Tab le 8 Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r  S e p a r a t i o n the F a c i l i a t i v e and H i n d e r i n g Incident: Occu r red Length of Time From Sepa ra t i on F % of I n c i den t s Cumulat i ve Frequency BEFORE SEPARATION 10 4.7 4.7 IMMEDIATELY AFTER 41 19.3 24.0 1 - 1 1 MONTHS 55 25.9 49.9 1 - 2 YEARS 56 26.4 76.3 3 - 4 YEARS 1 9 9.0 85.3 5 - 6 YEARS 1 5 7.1 92.4 7 - 8 YEARS 6 2.8 95.2 9 - 1 0 YEARS 8 3.8 99.0 1 1 - 1 2 YEARS 2 .9 99.9 As i n d i c a t e d i n Tab le 8, a lmost twenty percent ( 1 9 . 3 % ) of the 212 f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n . However, the m a j o r i t y of the i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d to occur up to two year s a f te rwards w i th about seventy- two percen t (71.6%) o c c u r r i n g at that t ime. 52 Tab le 9 Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r  Sepa ra t i on the F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i den t Occur red Length of Time From F % of I n c i d e n t s Cumulat ive S e p a r a t i o n Frequency BEFORE SEPARATION 9 6.7 6.7 IMMEDIATELY AFTER 16 1 1.9 18.6 1 - 1 1 MONTHS 40 29.9 48.5 1 - 2 YEARS 37 27.6 76.1 3 - 4 YEARS 13 9.7 85.8 5 - 6 YEARS 9 6.7 92.5 7 - 8 YEARS 5 3.7 96.2 9 - 1 0 YEARS 5 3.7 99.9 As demonstrated in Tab le 9, over f o r t y percent (41.8%) of the 134 f a c i l i t a t i v e i n c i d e n t s were r e p o r t e d to occur w i t h i n the f i r s t e l even months from the t ime of s e p a r a t i o n , and about s i x t y - n i n e pe rcen t (69.4%) o c c u r r e d w i t h i n the f i r s t two year s a f t e r w a r d s . Another ten percent (9.7%) o c c u r r e d between th ree and four year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n . Thus, over t w o - t h i r d s (69.4%) of a l l f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d w i t h i n the f i r s t two year s and over t h r e e - q u a r t e r s (79.1%) were r e p o r t e d to occur w i t h i n the f i r s t four year s from the t ime of s e p a r a t i o n . 53 Tab le 10 Cumulat ive Frequency D i s t r i b u t i o n of the Length of Time A f t e r  S e p a r a t i o n the H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t Occur red Length of Time From S e p a r a t i o n F % of I n c i d e n t s C u m l u l a t i v e Frequency BEFORE SEPARATION 1 1.3 1 .3 IMMEDIATELY AFTER 25 32. 1 33.4 1 - 1 1 MONTHS 15 19.2 52.6 1 - 2 YEARS 19 24.4 77.0 3 - 4 YEARS 6 7.7 84.7 5 - 6 YEARS 6 7.7 92.4 7 - 8 YEARS 1 1 .3 93.7 9 - 1 0 YEARS 3 3.9 97.6 1 1 - 1 2 YEARS 2 2.7 100.3 As demonstrated in Tab le 10, over h a l f (51.3%) of the 78 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d w i t h i n the f i r s t year a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n and about t h r e e - q u a r t e r s (75.7%) were r e p o r t e d to occur w i t h i n the f i r s t two yea r s a f t e r the s e p a r a t i o n . Another e i g h t pe rcen t (7.7%) o c c u r r e d between th ree and four year s a f t e r w a r d s , b r i n g i n g the t o t a l number of h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r i n g w i t h i n the f i r s t four years to over e i g h t y percent (83.4%). 54 The da ta were a l s o a n a l y z e d in regard to when, d u r i n g the adjustment p r o c e s s , the i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d . In T a b l e 11 i s d i s p l a y e d the l e n g t h of t ime from s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n that the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d . Tab le 11 Length of Time from S e p a r a t i o n the F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i d e n t Occu r red (n=l34 i n c i d e n t s ) F F BEFORE SEPARATION 9 Reassurance 5 Support 2 A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n 1 Expres sed Emotions 1 IMMEDIATELY AFTER 16 Support 6 A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n 3 I n c l u s i o n 2 Regu lar Contac t 2 Eva s i on 2 A s s e r t i o n 1 1 - 1 1 MONTHS 40 Support 15 I n c l u s i o n 6 A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n 5 A s s e r t i o n 3 Remin i s c ing 3 Regular Contact 2 Evas ion 2 Expres sed Emotions 2 Reassurance 1 Having a Home tha t 1 i s a Fami ly P l ace Tab le c o n t i n u e s Tab le 11 (cont inued) 1 - 2 YEARS Support I n c l u s i o n Having a Home tha t i s a Fami ly P l ace Regular Contac t A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n Remin i s c ing Evas ion Reassurance Expressed Emotions 3 - 4 YEARS Support I n c l u s i o n Having a Home tha t i s a Fami ly P l ace A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n Reassurance 5 - 6 YEARS Support I n c l u s i o n A s s e r t i o n Reassurance 37 7 - 8 YEARS 5 9 I n c l u s i o n 3 8 A c c e p t i n g D e c i s i o n 1 5 Evas ion 1 4 9 - 1 0 YEARS 5 4 Support 2 3 I n c l u s i o n 1 2 Regu lar Contact 1 1 Eva s i on 1 1 13 6 2 2 2 1 9 5 2 1. 1 56 As i l l u s t r a t e d in Tab le 11 the i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ca tegory e n t i t l e d , 'Reassurance that the C h i l d r e n are W e l l - C a r e d f o r ' , were r e p o r t e d to occur most o f t e n be fo re s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n w i th f i f t y percent (50.0%) r e p o r t e d to occur at tha t t ime. I n c i d e n t s forming the ' S o c i a l Support ' c a tego ry were r e p o r t e d to occur more f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g the f i r s t e l even months a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , w i th about o n e - t h i r d (32.6%) o c c u r r i n g at tha t t ime. A s i m i l a r f i n d i n g emerged w i th regard to the i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ca tego ry e n t i t l e d , ' Acceptance of her D e c i s i o n ' , w i th o n e - t h i r d (33.3%) of these r e p o r t e d to occur d u r i n g the f i r s t e l e v e n months a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , i n c i d e n t s forming the ' I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' c a tego ry were a l s o r e p o r t e d to occur f r e q u e n t l y du r i n g the f i r s t e l even months a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , w i th about one -qua r te r (24.0%) o c c u r r i n g at that t ime . The i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s ca tegory were a l s o r e p o r t e d to occur o f t e n between the f i r s t and second year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n w i th about o n e - t h i r d (32.0%) o c c u r r i n g at tha t t ime . I n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i,nto the ca tego ry e n t i t l e d , 'Hav ing a Home that i s a Fami ly P l a c e ' , were r e p o r t e d to occur more o f t e n between the f i r s t and second years a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , wi th over h a l f (55.6%) of these r e p o r t e d to occur at tha t t ime. In Tab le 12 i s d i s p l a y e d the l eng th of t ime from s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n that the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d . Tab le 12 Length of Time from Sepa ra t i on the H i n d e r i n g I n c i den t Occur red (n=78 i n c i d e n t s ) BEFORE SEPARATION 1 E x c l u s i o n 1 IMMEDIATELY AFTER 25 Poverty 9 Negat ive Judgment 6 E x c l u s i o n 6 G u i l t 2 Evas ion 2 1 - 1 1 MONTHS 15 Negat ive Judgment 7 E x c l u s i o n 3 Poverty 2 G u i l t 2 Evas ion 1 1 - 2 YEARS 19 Negat i ve Judgment 8 E x c l u s i o n 4 Evas ion % 3 G u i l t 2 Pover ty 2 3 - 4 YEARS 6 E x c l u s i o n 3 G u i l t 2 Nega t i ve Judgment 1 5 - 6 YEARS 6 G u i l t 3 Negat i ve Judgment 1 E x c l u s i o n 1 Pover ty 1 7 - 8 YEARS 1 E x c l u s i o n 1 9 - 1 0 YEARS 3 Negat ive Judgment 2 E x c l u s i o n 1 1 1 - 1 2 YEARS 2 Negat i ve Judgment 1 E x c l u s i o n 1 58 In terms of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s in Tab le 12, i t i s demonstrated tha t ' Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Suppor t ' was r e p o r t e d to occur about e q u a l l y d u r i n g the time p e r i o d s of immediate ly a f t e r , from one to e leven months a f t e r , and from one to two year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , wi th about twenty-seven percen t (26.9%) of these i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r i n g d u r i n g each of these p e r i o d s (23.1%, 26.9%, and 30.8% r e s p e c t i v e l y ) . The ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' ca tegory was r e p o r t e d to occur most o f t e n immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , w i th t h i r t y percent (30.0%) of these i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r i n g at tha t t ime. A d d i t i o n a l l y , a lmost t w o - t h i r d s (64.3%) of the i n c i d e n t s forming the ' P o v e r t y ' c a tego ry were r e p o r t e d to occur most o f t e n immediate ly a f t e r w a r d s . And f i n a l l y , about f o r t y - t h r e e percent (42.9%) of the i n c i d e n t s forming the ' E v a s i o n ' c a tego ry were r e p o r t e d to occur between one and two yea r s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n . Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the I n c i den t O c c u r r i n g It i s i n t e r e s t i n g to note who the p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g t h e i r ad jus tment . In Tab le 13 below i s demonstrated who or what was i d e n t i f i e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r i n g . 59 Tab le 13 Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the F a c i l i t a t i v e and H i n d e r i n g I n c i den t s (n=2l2 I n c i d e n t s ) Agent F Percentage SELF 41 19.3 CHILD 38 17.9 FRIENDS 34 16.0 EX-HUSBAND 32 15.1 FAMILY 20 9.4 OTHERS 1 7 8.0 PROFESSIONALS 16 7.6 POVERTY 1 4 6.6 I t i s i l l u s t r a t e d i n Tab le 13 that the re spondent s ' f a m i l y , tha t i s , mother, f a t h e r , s i s t e r s , b r o t h e r s , aun t s , and u n c l e s , were r e p o r t e d to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r e i t h e r f a c i l i t a t i n g or h i n d e r i n g adjustment in a l i m i t e d number of cases (9 .4%) . S i m i l a r l y , c o u n s e l l o r s , f a m i l y d o c t o r s , and o ther p r o f e s s i o n a l s were i d e n t i f i e d as r e s p o n s i b l e f o r a sma l l p r o p o r t i o n of the i n c i d e n t s (7.6%). On the other hand, however, the p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d themselves (19.3%), t h e i r c h i l d r e n (17.9%), t h e i r f r i e n d s (16.0%), and t h e i r ex-husbands (15.1%) as be ing most r e s p o n s i b l e fo r the i n c i d e n t s . 60 In T a b l e s 14 and 15 the f requency and percentage f o r the agent r e s p o n s i b l e fo r the f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s are d i s p l a y e d . Tab le 14 Agent Respons ib l e f o r the F a c i l i t a t i v e I n c i d e n t s (n=134 f a c i l i t a t i v e Agent i n c i d e n t s ) F Percentage SELF 31 23.1 CHILDREN 26 19.4 FRIENDS 26 19.4 EX-HUSBAND 14 10.5 FAMILY 1 2 9.0 OTHERS 1 3 9.7 PROFESSIONALS 12 9.0 In T a b l e s 14 and 15 i t i s demonstrated that the p a r t i c i p a n t s r e p o r t e d f a m i l y as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r on ly n ine percent (9.0%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g and about ten percen t (10.3%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . S i m i l a r i l y , p r o f e s s i o n a l s were i d e n t i f i e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r n ine percent (9.0%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g and about f i v e pe rcen t (5.1%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . C o n v e r s e l y , however, the respondents i d e n t i f i e d themselves as r e s p o n s i b l e f o r about twenty - th ree percent (23.1%) 61 of the f a c i l i t a t i n g and f o r on ly about t h i r t e e n percen t (12.8%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . C o r r e s p o n d i n g l y , f r i e n d s were r e p o r t e d to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r about n ine teen pe rcen t (19.4%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g and f o r on l y about ten percent (10.3%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . Ex-husbands, on the o ther hand, were r e p o r t e d as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s in on l y about e l even percen t (10.5%) of the cases and r e s p o n s i b l e fo r the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s i n about twen ty - th ree percent (23.1%) of the c a s e s . A d d i t i o n a l l y , the p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d t h e i r c h i l d r e n as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r a reasonab ly h i gh percentage of the f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s , w i th about n ine teen p e r c e n t (19.4%) r e p o r t e d to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the f a c i l i t a t i n g and about f i f t e e n percen t (15.4%) r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the h i n d e r i n g inc i d e n t s . The l a t t e r four f i g u r e s demonstrate that the respondents i d e n t i f i e d themse lves , t h e i r c h i l d r e n , and t h e i r f r i e n d s as the th ree most f a c i l i t a t i n g s ou rce s , wh i l e t h e i r ex-husbands were i d e n t i f i e d as the most h i n d e r i n g s o u r c e . As w e l l , the m a j o r i t y of the p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d t h e i r f r i e n d s as more f a c i l i t a t i v e than f a m i l y i n regard to t h e i r ad jus tment . Tab le 15 Agent Re spons ib l e f o r the H i n d e r i n g I n c i d e n t s (n=78 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s ) Agent F Percentage SELF 10 12.8 CHILDREN 12 15.4 FRIENDS 8 10.3 EX-HUSBAND 18 23.1 FAMILY 8 . 1 0 . 3 OTHERS 4 5.1 PROFESSIONALS 4 5.1 POVERTY 14 18.0 63 CHAPTER V DISCUSSION Statement of R e s u l t s S o c i a l Support S e v e r a l f i n d i n g s of i n t e r e s t emerged from examinat ion of the d a t a . One of the most s i g n i f i c a n t p a t t e r n s tha t emerged e a r l y and was c o n s i s t e n t throughout the i n t e r v i e w s was the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of support from o the r s as a f a c i l i t a t i v e f a c t o r , w i th about o n e - t h i r d (34.3%) of the 134 f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s forming th i s , c a t e g o r y . T h i s f i n d i n g concurs w i th Pa skowi tz ' (1982) f i n d i n g that support from f r i e n d s and f a m i l y i s an important c o n t r i b u t o r to adjustment f o r mothers who are l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . In t h i s s tudy, i t .was the most f r e q u e n t l y c i t e d i n c i d e n t and t h e r e f o r e may be the most important f a c t o r a f f e c t i n g the adjustment p r o c e s s . In f a c t , 16 of the 17 p a r t i c i p a n t s , or about n i n e t y - f o u r pe rcen t (94.1%) i n d i c a t e d that support was a major a spect in terms of t h e i r ad jus tment . One of the s u r p r i s e f i n d i n g s r e g a r d i n g t h i s c a tego ry was the importance p l a c e d on support from f r i e n d s as opposed to support coming from f a m i l y members. I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g tha t over o n e - h a l f (52.2%) of the 46 i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ' S o c i a l Suppor t 1 ca tegory were r e l a t e d to f r i e n d s , compared to on ly about seventeen percent (17.4%) r e l a t i n g to f a m i l y . However, one respondent r e p o r t e d how support from her 64 f a m i l y was f a c i l i t a t i v e to her. "You know that t e r r i b l e aloneness. Oh s h i t , gee, i t was s h i t t y , but knowing there was my f a m i l y I c o u l d count on when I needed them. I c o u l d t a l k to them about my pa i n , and then i t d i d n ' t hurt so much." Another woman r e c a l l e d how support from her b o y f r i e n d helped her. "I had such a st r o n g r e a c t i o n the day my k i d s l e f t . I don't think I ever f e l t that bad i n my whole l i f e . I t was l i k e I was f a l l i n g a p a r t . So what was h e l p f u l was when my b o y f r i e n d came i n and he h e l d me. He was j u s t so s u p p o r t i v e and n u r t u r i n g . . . . I guess j u s t the comfort i n being p h y s i c a l l y h e l d , e s p e c i a l l y i f you f e e l as i f you're f a l l i n g to p i e c e s . To have someone ho l d you t i g h t l y so i t f e e l s as though you can't r e a l l y f a l l a p a r t . " A t h i r d woman recounted how support from her fa m i l y doctor was f a c i l i t a t i v e . "Because he was nonjudgmental, I f e l t I c o u l d be t o t a l l y honest with him about my s i t u a t i o n . I guess I hadn't thought about i t u n t i l j u s t now, but I probably hadn't been t o t a l l y honest with anyone because I was a f r a i d that people would thi n k I was a h o r r i b l e person. So when he was su p p o r t i v e and nonjudgmental of me, I f e l t t h i s huge r e l i e f that f i n a l l y , I had someone I c o u l d t a l k t o . " I n c l u s i o n i n the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e I n c l u s i o n i n the c h i l d r e n ' s l i f e was a l s o r e p o r t e d as an important f a c t o r f a c i l i t a t i n g adjustment f o r the p a r t i c i p a n t s with about nineteen percent (18.7%) of the f a c i l i t a t i v e i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y . The f o l l o w i n g example e x e m p l i f i e s how i n c l u s i o n was f a c i l i t a t i n g f o r t h i s woman. "My son's teacher c a l l e d to i n v i t e me f o r a c o n s u l t a t i o n about my son's school r e p o r t . T h i s j u s t 65 o c c u r r e d out of the b lue t o o . H i s t eacher i n v o l v e d me. She d i d n ' t make the assumption tha t s i n c e the k i d s d i d n ' t l i v e w i th me tha t I wasn ' t i n t e r e s t e d i n be ing i n v o l v e d in t h e i r s c h o o l i n g . That was important to me because she i n v o l v e d me and saw me as important i n my son ' s l i f e . " A l though i n c l u s i o n w i th the c h i l d r e n ' s s c h o o l or other source was i d e n t i f i e d as h e l p f u l , i t seems that d i r e c t i n c l u s i o n w i th the c h i l d r e n was the most s i g n i f i c a n t f a c t o r f o r the p a r t i c i p a n t s wi th f o r t y - e i g h t pe rcen t (48.0%) of the i n c i d e n t s i n t h i s c a tego ry i d e n t i f y i n g the c h i l d r e n as the meaningfu l source r e s p o n s i b l e f o r f a c i l i t a t i o n . An example of t h i s i s demonstrated by the f o l l o w i n g i n c i d e n t : " S i n c e I c o u l d n ' t be at my d a u g h t e r ' s b i r t h d a y p a r t y , I wanted to p a r t i c i p a t e in some way. So she and I made a cake t o g e t h e r , and I was a b l e to share in her b i r t h d a y . I got to share something s p e c i a l w i th her on her b i r t h d a y . " Another woman r e c a l l e d how i n c l u s i o n in her d a u g h t e r ' s l i f e was f a c i l i t a t i v e to h e r . "I was go ing downtown to have l unch w i th my g i r l f r i e n d , and my daughter dec i ded she was go ing to d re s s me up, you see . So she d res sed me in a l l her c l o t h e s , which a re r e a l l y cu te i f y o u ' r e 15, but you look a b s o l u t e l y s i l l y when y o u ' r e 36. And s h e ' s got me a l l d re s sed up in s t r e t c h pants and l e g warmers and the whole b i t . So, I got d res sed up and came out and s a i d , ' W e l l , what do you t h i n k ? ' And she s t a r t s l a u g h i n g , you know. And we had a good laugh together over t h a t . So when you get t h i ng s l i k e t h a t , s imple t h i n g s l i k e that make you f e e l c l o s e to each o t h e r , make me f e e l p a r t of her l i f e , and i t h e l p s a l o t . " E v a s i v e Behav ior I t i s important to p o i n t out tha t some of the p a r t i c i p a n t s , about f i v e percent (4.5%), r e p o r t e d a need to a v o i d t h i n k i n g 66 about t h e i r s i t u a t i o n as be ing f a c i l i t a t i v e . T h i s may sound incongruent to f a c i l i t a t i o n , but t h i s was not the case f o r the women who r e p o r t e d avo idance as a f a c i l i t a t i v e f a c t o r . The f o l l o w i n g example demonstrates how avo idance was h e l p f u l f o r t h i s respondent : " I f you keep busy, i t p revent s you from g e t t i n g d e p r e s s e d . T h a t ' s why I became a w o r k a h o l i c . " Another p a r t i c i p a n t r e p o r t e d , "I had to s top t h i n k i n g about my daughter . I j u s t f e l t tha t I had to get away from t h i n k i n g about her a l l the t ime . It was e a t i n g away at me. So I t r a v e l l e d f o r a yea r . . . .Wha t was so h e l p f u l I guess was tha t I avo ided the s i t u a t i o n , but I had to because i t was j u s t too p a i n f u l f o r me to f a c e . " Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Support In terms of the 78 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s a f f e c t i n g ad jus tment , a c o n s i d e r a b l e number formed the 'Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Suppor t ' c a t e g o r y , w i th o n e - t h i r d (33.3%) of a l l h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e o g r y . T h i s c a tego ry co r re sponds s t r i k i n g l y in f requency and content to the most f r e q u e n t l y r e p o r t e d f a c i l i t a t i v e c a t e g o r y . That i s , about o n e - t h i r d (34.3%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s formed the ' S o c i a l Suppor t ' c a t e g o r y . A d d i t i o n a l l y , wh i le 16 of the 17 p a r t i c i p a n t s (94.1%) r e p o r t e d that support from o the r s a f f e c t e d t h e i r ad jus tment , 15 of the 17 (88.2%) r e p o r t e d that nega t i ve judgment and l ack of support h i nde red t h e i r ad jus tment . In accordance w i th Doudna's (1982), F i s c h e r ' s (1983), F i s c h e r a n d C a r d e a ' s (1981), G r e i f ' s (1987), H o u s t l e ' s (1979), K o e h l e r ' s (1982), Rosenblum's (1986), S t o l l ' s (1985), S u l l i v a n ' s (1979), and T o d r e s ' (1978) f i n d i n g s tha t n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers 67 exper i ence nega t i ve judgment from o t h e r s , the m a j o r i t y of women in t h i s study (88.2%) r e p o r t e d nega t i ve judgment and l ack of support from o the r s as h i n d e r i n g t h e i r ad jus tment . I t i s important to p o i n t out tha t of the 26 i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y , over n ine teen percen t (19.2%) i d e n t i f i e d the ex-husband as be ing judgmenta l . T h i s compares w i th on ly about two percent (2.2%) of the 46 f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s f a l l i n g i n t o the ' S o c i a l Suppor t ' c a tegory i d e n t i f y i n g the ex-husband as be ing s u p p o r t i v e . In o rder to i l l u s t r a t e how nega t i ve judgment and l ack of support h i ndered adjustment f o r the p a r t i c i p a n t s , some d i r e c t q u o t a t i o n s of responses are p r e s e n t e d . One woman, f o r example, r e p o r t e d how l ack of support from her b o y f r i e n d h i nde red her ad jus tment . "He wasn ' t ab le to unders tand what I e x p e r i e n c e d w i th t h i s . And what was r e a l l y hard was that sometimes he made l i g h t of my f e e l i n g s , as though I was be ing o v e r l y e m o t i o n a l . He ' d say that I was making myse l f depres sed by f e e l i n g s o r r y f o r mysel f because I wasn ' t t he re w i th my k i d s . You know, I f e l t tha t I was be ing c r i t i c i z e d about my f e e l i n g s f o r my k i d s . That hur t because he c r i t i c i z e d what was a very deep ly emot iona l expe r i ence f o r me. And what was so hard about tha t was h e ' s the person I'm most connected w i th and he d i d n ' t undertand what t h i s o ther most important p a r t of my l i f e was l i k e f o r me. I t made me f e e l as i f I d i d n ' t have anywhere or anyone to tu rn to and I f e l t ext remely i s o l a t e d in d e a l i n g wi th i t a l l by m y s e l f . " Another respondent r e l a t e d how nega t i ve judgment from her p s y c h i a t r i s t h i n d e r e d h e r . " W e l l , I was m i s s i ng my k id s a l o t and s t i l l c r y i n g a g rea t d e a l and I needed some h e l p . . . . I was f e e l i n g p r e t t y depre s sed , so I went to see a d o c t o r , a p s y c h i a t r i s t , someone to t a l k to and t h i s person hur t me because he more or l e s s t o l d me that I was a f l o o z y and that I d i d n ' t want to l i v e wi th my k i d s because I j u s t wanted to have a good t ime. He t o l d me that I s h o u l d n ' t f e e l g u i l t y e i t h e r because t h a t ' s j u s t the way I was. You know, j u s t out to have a good t ime. I 68 f e l t h o r r i b l e and wished that I h adn ' t opened my t r a p about any th ing to him about how I f e l t because I was j u s t s t a r t i n g to b u i l d mysel f up and he knocked me r i g h t back down a g a i n . " E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e Another h i n d e r i n g c a tego ry r e p o r t e d by the m a j o r i t y of p a r t i c i p a n t s was ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' , w i th about t w e n t y - s i x percent (25.6%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y . I t i s noteworthy to p o i n t out that an overwhelming number of h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s (65.0%) i d e n t i f i e d the ex-husband as be ing r e s p o n s i b l e f o r e x c l u d i n g her from the c h i l d r e n ' s l i f e . C o n v e r s e l y , a much sma l l e r number of f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ' I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' ca tegory (24.0%) i d e n t i f i e d the ex-husband as i n c l u d i n g her i n the c h i l d r e n ' s l i f e . Some t y p i c a l examples of i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' c a tego ry a r e : "My d a u g h t e r ' s b i r t h d a y was coming up, and at her p l ay s c h o o l they would c e l e b r a t e w i th l i t t l e i n d i v i d u a l cupcakes f o r each c h i l d . So I t o l d my ex-husband that I wanted to make these cupcakes f o r her s choo l b i r t h d a y c e l e b r a t i o n . So I d i d , and I got over to t h e i r house about 8:30 at n i gh t and my daughter was a s l e e p . So I a r r i v e d w i th these cupcakes and my ex-husband wou ldn ' t answer the door . F i n a l l y , he came to the door but s t i l l wou ldn ' t open i t . But , through the m a i l s l o t he s a i d tha t I had no r i g h t to come over wi thout t e l e p h o n i n g . I thought he was be ing r i d i c u l o u s , so I s a i d , ' W e l l , I'm s o r r y to d i s t u r b you, but I 've got the cupcakes and i f y o u ' l l j u s t open the door and take them, I ' l l be on my way. ' And he s a i d , ' No . ' So I s a i d , ' Y o u ' l l open the God Damn door or I ' l l shove the cupcakes through the m a i l s l o t . ' So t h e r e I was, on the f r o n t p o r c h , shout ing through t h i s m a i l s l o t , 'Open t h i s f u c k i n g d o o r . ' And h e ' d y e l l back, ' No . ' I was fuming because he wou ldn ' t l e t me drop o f f the cupcakes I made fo r my d a u g h t e r ' s b i r t h d a y . He took that away from me." 69 Another p a r t i c i p a n t r e c a l l e d how her ex-husband exc luded her from spending Chr i s tmas w i th the c h i l d r e n . "Not be ing ab le to spend Chr i s tmas w i th my k i d s . That was t e r r i b l e . My ex-husband and I d i d n ' t have a c l e a r - c u t s e p a r a t i o n agreement, so I was power less to change the s i t u a t i o n . There was no way to n e g o t i a t e w i th my ex-husband to change h i s m ind . " G u i l t In a c c o r d w i th K o e h l e r ' s (1982), Paskowicz ' (1982), and T o d r e s ' (1978) f i n d i n g s tha t n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers f e e l g u i l t y f o r r e l i n q u i s h i n g custody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n , some of the women in t h i s s tudy i d e n t i f i e d g u i l t as a f a c t o r tha t h i n d e r e d t h e i r ad jus tment , w i th about f ou r teen percen t (14.1%) of a l l h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y . The f o l l o w i n g example d e s c r i b e s one p a r t i c i p a n t ' s e x p e r i e n c e w i th g u i l t . " S o c i e t y ' s view of what a mother i s . That has to be r i g h t up there w i th my husband and him do ing h i s number on me. I t was so easy f o r him to ac t the p a r t . The f a t h e r wi th the c h i l d r e n and what a l ousy person I must be and i t wasn ' t t r u e . But that i s how I 'd f e e l a l o t of the t ime. You c o u l d s t i l l be a good f a t h e r and not have your c h i l d r e n , but i t ' s much more d i f f i c u l t to be the good mother and not have your c h i l d r e n . S o c i e t y says you have to have them through t h i c k and t h i n . I t d o e s n ' t matter i f you are poor or no t , and i t d o e s n ' t matter whether you may want some t h i n g s f o r y o u r s e l f . The c h i l d r e n shou ld come f i r s t . And I ' ve bought i n t o tha t v iew. I'm g u i l t y because I put myse l f f i r s t . " Another woman r e c a l l e d how g u i l t a f f e c t e d h e r , "When my k id s l e f t to l i v e w i th t h e i r dad, I f e l t r e l i e f , but then I was g u i l t y about my r e l i e f and thought tha t something was wrong w i th me because I d i d n ' t want my k i d s l i v i n g w i th me." 70 Pover ty Another f a c t o r r e p o r t e d by some of the p a r t i c i p a n t s suppor t s the r e s e a r c h assumption that not hav ing enough money h i n d e r e d ad jus tment . That i s , e i gh teen percent (18.0%) of a l l h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s formed the ca tegory e n t i t l e d , ' P o v e r t y ' and s e v e r a l respondents s t a t e d tha t not hav ing enough money h indered them. For example, some mothers were not ab le to a f f o r d to buy a ca r and c o n s e q u e n t l y , were unable to see t h e i r c h i l d r e n as o f t e n as they would l i k e . Others r e p o r t e d that they d i d not have enough money to a f f o r d to rent a house or apartment s u i t a b l e f o r comfo r t ab l e v i s i t s w i th t h e i r c h i l d r e n . And some even s t a t e d tha t they were unable to a f f o r d to buy food f o r t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s v i s i t s . T h i s f a c t o r cor responds to G r e i f ' s (1987) f i n d i n g that the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s f i n a n c i a l s t a tu s p l a y s an important r o l e in her adjustment p r o c e s s . Supe ro rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s Regard ing the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s , the l a r g e s t of the th ree was ' I n t e r p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' , which i l l u s t r a t e s the importance the women p l a c e d on r e l a t i o n s h i p s and i n t e r a c t i o n s w i th o the r s as a f f e c t i n g t h e i r adjus tment . That i s , almost t w o - t h i r d s (66.0%) of the 212 i n c i d e n t s formed t h i s c a tego ry , wh i l e about twen ty - th ree percent (23.1%) formed the ' I n t r a p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' c a tego ry and on ly about e l e v e n percent (10.9%) of the 212 i n c i d e n t s formed the ' E x t e r n a l F a c t o r s ' c a t e g o r y . 71 Time Frame The data i n d i c a t e that the m a j o r i t y of i n c i d e n t s , both f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g , o c c u r r e d w i t h i n the f i r s t two year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n w i th almost t h r e e - q u a r t e r s (71.6%) of a l l i n c i d e n t s r e p o r t e d to occur d u r i n g tha t t ime p e r i o d . T h e r e f o r e , an important t ime f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in terms of the adjustment p roces s o c c u r r e d w i t h i n the f i r s t two year s from the t ime of s e p a r a t i o n . A d d i t i o n a l l y , in c o n t r a s t to the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s , about t h i r t y - o n e percent (30.8%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , ' wh i le on ly about f i v e pe rcen t (5.2%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d at tha t t ime . Thus, a c r i t i c a l time in terms of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r e d immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n . The da ta a l s o r e v e a l tha t the f a c i l i t a t i v e ca tego ry e n t i t l e d 'Reassurance that the C h i l d r e n are W e l l - C a r e d F o r ' , o c c u r r e d most o f t e n be fo re s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n , w i th f i f t y percent (50.0%) of the i n c i d e n t s in t h i s ca tegory r e p o r t e d to occur at tha t t ime . I n c i d e n t s forming the 'Acceptance of her D e c i s i o n ' , ' S o c i a l S u p p o r t ' , and ' I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' c a tegory were r e p o r t e d to occur most o f t e n d u r i n g the f i r s t e leven months a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , wi th 33.3%, 32.6%, and 24.0% r e s p e c t i v e l y r epo r ted to occur at tha t t ime. I n c i d e n t s forming the ' I n c l u s i o n in the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' c a tego ry were a l s o r e p o r t e d to occur f r e q u e n t l y between the f i r s t and second year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , wi th about o n e - t h i r d (32.0%) o c c u r r i n g at tha t t ime . As w e l l , i n c i d e n t s c l a s s i f i e d i n t o the ca tego ry e n t i t l e d , 'Hav ing a Home that i s a Fami ly P l a c e ' were r e p o r t e d 72 to occur more o f t e n between the f i r s t and second year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n w i th over h a l f (55.6%) o c c u r r i n g at t ha t t ime. In terms of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s , 'Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l Suppor t ' was r e p o r t e d to occur about e q u a l l y d u r i n g the time p e r i o d s of immediate ly a f t e r (23.1%), from one to e l even months a f t e rward s (26.9%), and from one to two year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n (30.8%). The ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' c a tego ry was r e p o r t e d to occur most o f t e n immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , w i th t h i r t y p e r c e n t (30.0%) o c c u r r i n g at tha t t ime. A d d i t i o n a l l y , almost t w o - t h i r d s (64.3%) of the i n c i d e n t s forming the ' P o v e r t y ' ca tegory were r e p o r t e d to occur immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n . And f i n a l l y , the i n c i d e n t s forming the ' E v a s i o n ' c a tego ry were r e p o r t e d to occur more f r e q u e n t l y between one and two year s a f t e r w a r d s , w i th about f o r t y - t h r e e pe rcen t (42.9%) o c c u r r i n g , at that t ime . Agent Re spons i b l e f o r the I n c i d e n t O c c u r r i n g The p a r t i c i p a n t s i d e n t i f i e d themse lves , t h e i r c h i l d r e n , and t h e i r f r i e n d s as the th ree most f a c i l i t a t i v e sources a f f e c t i n g t h e i r ad jus tment , wh i l e r e p o r t i n g t h e i r ex-husbands as the most h i n d e r i n g s ou r ce . A d d i t i o n a l l y , i t i s noteworthy that the m a j o r i t y of respondents i d e n t i f i e d t h e i r f r i e n d s as more f a c i l i t a t i v e than f a m i l y in regard to t h e i r ad jus tment . 73 Comparisons wi th Other Research F i n d i n g s Some d i r e c t compar isons between f i n d i n g s of t h i s r e s e a r c h and those of o ther r e s e a r c h e r s were made. For example, Paskowicz ' (1982) f i n d i n g s tha t support from o the r s f a c i l i t a t e d n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers , co r re sponds w i th one of the c a t e g o r i e s in t h i s r e s e a r c h e n t i t l e d , ' S o c i a l S u p p o r t ' . Doudna (1982), F i s c h e r (1983), F i s c h e r and Cardea (1981), G r e i f (1987), Hous t le (1979), Koeh le r (1982), Rosenblum (1986), S t o l l (1985), S u l l i v a n (1979), and Todres (1978) conc luded that n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers e x p e r i e n c e nega t i ve judgment from o t h e r s , which cor responds wi th the r e s e a r c h ca tegory e n t i t l e d , 'Nega t i ve Judgment/Lack of S o c i a l S u p p o r t ' . As w e l l , Koeh le r (1982), Paskowicz (1982), and Todres (1978) found that n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers f e e l g u i l t y fo r r e l i n q u i s h i n g cus tody of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . T h i s f i n d i n g co r re sponds w i th the ca tegory in t h i s r e s e a r c h study e n t i t l e d , ' G u i l t ' . In a d d i t i o n , wh i le the c a t e g o r i e s in t h i s r e s e a r c h d i d not d i r e c t l y agree wi th the c o n s t r u c t s made by the f o l l o w i n g r e s e a r c h e r s , t he re were some s i m i l a r i t y of f i n d i n g s . For example, Doudna (1982), and G r e i f (1987) hypo thes i zed tha t the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s adjustment i s dependent upon her a b i l i t y to s u c c e s s f u l l y e s t a b l i s h a new r e l a t i o n s h i p w i th her c h i l d r e n . In t h i s s tudy , wh i le t h i s was not mentioned o f t e n enough or s p e c i f i c a l l y enough to generate a c a t e g o r y , a s i m i l a r ca tegory was c r e a t e d . That i s , ' Accep tance of Her D e c i s i o n ' , which c o n t a i n e d some statements s u p p o r t i n g Doudna's and G r e i f s f i n d i n g s . One woman, fo r i n s t a n c e , wh i le r e c o u n t i n g how a c c e p t i n g her d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n was 74 f a c i l i t a t i v e f o r h e r , s t a t e d that a f a c t o r tha t he lped was see ing her c h i l d r e n l e s s o f t e n . She was t h e r e f o r e a b l e to accept her r e l a t i o n s h i p w i th her c h i l d r e n as a p a r t - t i m e r a t h e r than a f u l l - t i m e mother. She r e f l e c t e d t h a t , "One of the b i g t h i n g s was see ing my c h i l d r e n l e s s o f t e n . . . . I mean, what he lped me was that I began to accept my d e c i s i o n as something good and p o s i t i v e . I t was coming to the r e a l i z a t i o n tha t my r e l a t i o n s h i p w i th my c h i l d r e n was chang ing , not e n d i n g . " Doudna (1982) a l s o p o s t u l a t e d that n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers ' e f f e c t i v e adjustment i s dependent on t h e i r a b i l i t y to f i n d f u l f i l l m e n t in t h e i r new s i t u a t i o n . Aga in , wh i le t h i s i n c i d e n t was not d i r e c t l y r e p o r t e d in t h i s s tudy , some women s t a t e d tha t they had more t ime to pursue t h e i r p e r s o n a l g o a l s . For example, in d e s c r i b i n g the p roces s of coming to accept her d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n , one respondent r e p o r t e d , "I was f i n a l l y ab le to accept my d e c i s i o n and to t h i n k about my own g o a l s . So I dec ided to go back to s c h o o l . I became a s t uden t . I mean I c o u l d f i n a l l y say, 'I am a s t u d e n t ' . That was important to me because I wasn ' t j u s t a mother anymore." The women i n t h i s study d i d not r e p o r t what G r e i f (1987) found in h i s r e s e a r c h that the mother ' s adjustment i s a i d e d i f she b e l i e v e s tha t her c h i l d r e n are b e t t e r o f f l i v i n g w i th t h e i r f a t h e r . However, a s i m i l a r f i n d i n g emerged. About e i g h t percent (7.5%) of the p a r t i c i p a n t s s t a t e d that be ing r e a s s u r e d tha t the c h i l d r e n were w e l l - c a r e d f o r by t h e i r ex-husband was a f a c i l i t a t i n g f a c t o r f o r them. 75 I m p l i c a t i o n s and Recommendations One p o t e n t i a l va lue to t h i s r e s e a r c h i s the p r o v i s i o n of i n f o r m a t i o n that can be used by s e r v i c e agenc ie s to h e l p the adjustment of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . The 15 subord ina te and 3 s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s suggest some g e n e r a l g u i d e l i n e s f o r program .planning f o r these women. T h e r e f o r e , i t i s recommended that c o u n s e l l o r s and workshop l e a d e r s take these g u i d e l i n e s i n t o account when working w i th n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . Regard les s .of the reasons these women have f o r choos ing to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n , they have one t h i n g in common. They are in a s i t u a t i o n tha t i s r e l a t i v e l y r a re and s o c i a l l y d i s app roved of (Doudna, 1982; F i s c h e r , 1983; F i s c h e r & Cardea, 1981; G r e i f , 1987; H o u s t l e , 1979; I s enha r t , 1979; K e l l e r , 1975; K o e h l e r , 1982; L u e p n i t z , 1982; McKie, P r e n t i c e , & Reed, 1983; Paskowicz, 1982; Rosenblum, 1986; Rowlands, 1980; Rub in , 1983; S t o l l , 1985; S u l l i v a n , 1979; Todres , 1978; Wei s s , 1979). Thus, many n o n - c u s t o d i a l . mothers need c o u n s e l l i n g and r e l a t e d s e r v i c e s . Some suggested s t r a t e g i e s f o r c o u n s e l l o r s working w i th t h i s group of women a r e : 1. Recognize and become f a m i l i a r w i th the f a c i l i t a t i v e and h i n d e r i n g f a c t o r s a f f e c t i n g the adjustment p roces s f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. A d d i t i o n a l l y , i t i s suggested that c o u n s e l l o r s l e a r n about an i n d i v i d u a l c l i e n t ' s f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g sources from tha t c l i e n t . 2. F a c i l i t a t e r o l e c l a r i f i c a t i o n by e x p l o r i n g and d e f i n i n g mother ing in new ways. 76 3. C l a r i f y needs, and p l an and implement new behav io r p a t t e r n s . He lp to i d e n t i f y the r o l e s these women want to p l a y in t h e i r c h i l d r e n s ' l i v e s and h e l p them to pursue these needs i n c o n s t r u c t i v e and d i r e c t ways. In a d d i t i o n , h e l p them to i d e n t i f y , set and ma in ta in boundar ie s r e l a t e d to t h e i r needs. 4. Exp l o re p e r s o n a l s t r e n g t h s . It i s important f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers to d i s c o v e r that they have the inner r e s o u r c e s neces sa ry to l ead the n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e - s t y l e they have chosen . 5. He lp these women to r e c o g n i z e , unders tand and a l l e v i a t e t h e i r g u i l t by q u e s t i o n i n g i t s o r i g i n , when i t deve loped and why. 6. A s s i s t n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers to become aware of and to examine the dynamics and impact of s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l norms. Encourage these women to q u e s t i o n the v a l i d i t y of these norms and to examine the a p p r o p r i a t e n e s s to t h e i r l i f e - s t y l e . A d d i t o n a l l y , h e l p them to unders tand these s o c i e t a l norms as o p i n i o n s r a t h e r than s tatements of f a c t . Fur thermore , f a c i l i t a t e an awareness of the nega t i ve s t e r e o t y p e s about n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and h e l p t h i s group beg in to overcome the s o c i a l s a n c t i o n s imposed on them. It i s important to h e l p these women r e a l i z e tha t a l though they cannot c o n t r o l the b e l i e f s and a c t i o n s of o t h e r s toward them, they can change t h e i r own b e l i e f s and a c t i o n s r e g a r d i n g t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . 77 7. V a l i d a t e the women's b e l i e f tha t avo idance can be a r a t i o n a l and l e g i t i m a t e c h o i c e . A v o i d i n g judgmental peop le , f o r example, can be a h e a l t h y response du r i n g the adjustment p r o c e s s . 8. Encourage these women to become f a m i l i a r w i th t h e i r l e g a l r i g h t s , e s p e c i a l l y r ega rd ing v i s i t a t i o n and acces s to t h e i r c h i l d r e n . 9. Work w i t h , and h e l p to educate both pa rent s i n order to f a c i l i t a t e honest and d i r e c t communicat ion p a t t e r n s w i t h i n the f a m i l y . 10. O f f e r i n d i v i d u a l c o u n s e l l i n g , e x p l o r i n g the emot iona l and p s y c h o l o g i c a l a spec t s a f f e c t i n g ad jus tment . One of the most meaningfu l ways to f a c i l i t a t e adjustment i s to encourage n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers to share t h e i r f e e l i n g s and to work through them. Acco rd ing to Corey and Corey (1982), the e x p r e s s i o n of emotions i s t h e r a p e u t i c because once emotions a re expre s sed , e s p e c i a l l y ' p e n t - u p ' emot ions , they tend to r e l e a s e new energy and con sequen t l y , the i n d i v i d u a l i s more l i k e l y to r e a l i z e inner re sources needed to d i r e c t the course of t h e i r l i v e s . A d d i t i o n a l l y , Kub le r -Ros s (1969) emphas ized, in her work wi th l o s s from d e a t h , that the more the i n d i v i d u a l can express f e e l i n g s of g r i e f and l o s s , the l e s s unbearab le i t becomes. T h e r e f o r e , i t i s suggested that the c o u n s e l l o r a s s i s t these women to d e a l w i th t h e i r l o s s , e s p e c i a l l y the l o s s of t h e i r l i f e - s t y l e and f a m i l i a r mother ing r o l e s . The f o l l o w i n g example d e s c r i b e s how h e l p f u l i t was f o r one of the p a r t i c i p a n t s to o 78 e x p r e s s h e r f e e l i n g s . " I l e t m y s e l f m i s s t h e m , t o f e e l i t a n d c r y a n d j u s t f e e l r e a l l y r e a l l y m i s e r a b l e t o t h e p o i n t o f w a n t i n g t o s c r e a m t o s o m e t h i n g , somewhere a b o u t my p a i n . A n d i t ' s o k a y t o e x p r e s s i t b e c a u s e I t h i n k i t ' s w o n d e r f u l t o l o v e s o d e e p t h a t i t h u r t s l i k e h e l l w i t h o u t i t . So when I m i s s my k i d s a n d f e e l t h a t p a i n , i t d o e s n ' t mean i t ' s a n e g a t i v e t h i n g . I t ' s p a r t o f a p r o c e s s f o r me o f d e a l i n g w i t h t h a t l o s s . " 1 1 . D e v e l o p a s u p p o r t g r o u p f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s , d e s i g n e d s p e c i f i c a l l y t o f o c u s on t h e d i f f i c u l t i e s t h e s e women e n c o u n t e r a s w e l l a s t h e s p e c i a l n e e d s t h e y h a v e ( 2 ) . G r o u p s c a n p r o v i d e many a d v a n t a g e s f o r m o t h e r s who a r e l i v i n g a p a r t f r o m t h e i r c h i l d r e n . F o r e x a m p l e , i t i s i m p o r t a n t f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s t o know t h a t t h e y a r e n o t a l o n e . T h e r e f o r e , i n v o l v e m e n t w i t h o t h e r women i n a s i m i l a r s i t u a t i o n c a n h e l p t o a l l e v i a t e t h e i s o l a t i o n a n d a l i e n a t i o n many n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s e x p e r i e n c e . A n o t h e r a d v a n t a g e o f s u p p o r t g r o u p s i s t h a t members c a n c r e a t e a s a f e e n v i r o n m e n t w h i c h w i l l e n c o u r a g e a n d p r o m o t e s h a r i n g a n d e x p r e s s i n g e m o t i o n s . A n d , members who o f f e r c a r e a n d s u p p o r t w i l l g e n e r a l l y f a c i l i t a t e o t h e r s t o f e e l t h a t t h e i r p e r s o n a l c o n c e r n s a r e i m p o r t a n t a n d v a l i d . A s w e l l , members who p r e s e n t c o n s t r u c t i v e f e e d b a c k w i l l f r e q u e n t l y f a c i l i t a t e new l e a r n i n g s , i n s i g h t s a n d c h a n g e . I t i s n o t e w o r t h y t h a t a l l o f t h e 17 women who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s s t u d y s t a t e d on t h e d e m o g r a p h i c q u e s t i o n n a i r e t h a t t h e y t h o u g h t a s u p p o r t g r o u p f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l m o t h e r s w o u l d be h e l p f u l t o t h e m . I n a d d i t i o n , some o f t h e women c o m m e n t e d d u r i n g t h e i n t e r v i e w s e s s i o n a b o u t t h e i r d e s i r e f o r a s u p p o r t g r o u p . One r e s p o n d e n t , f o r i n s t a n c e , i n d i c a t e d how s h e t h o u g h t a g r o u p o f t h i s t y p e c o u l d f a c i l i t a t e h e r . 79 "I took the route of t r y i n g to d e a l w i th a l l t h i s myse l f . I t b o t t l e d me up b a s i c a l l y because I d o n ' t have anyone to t a l k w i t h . So, 1 t h i nk what would be a r e a l l y important re source would be a support group of women who are go ing through the same t h i n g s because they are the on ly ones who c o u l d r e a l l y u n d e r s t a n d . " Another women s a i d tha t she j o i n e d a support group f o r s i n g l e mothers because i t was the on ly type of group that was remote ly r e l a t e d to her s i t u a t i o n , and a l though t h i s group was h e l p f u l and o f f e r e d suppor t , she sometimes f e l t out of p l a c e and a lone in d e a l i n g w i th some of the i s sue s she f aced as a mother l i v i n g a p a r t from her c h i l d r e n . 12. O f f e r c a r e e r and l i f e - s t y l e p l a n n i n g programs, e x p l o r i n g i n t e r e s t s , v a l u e s , goa l s and s k i l l s . A d d i t i o n a l l y , e x p l o r e r e a l i s t i c c a r e e r op t i on s and suggest job t r a i n i n g programs i f a p p l i c a b l e . 13. He lp to deve lop a sense of hope in o rder to g i ve these women the c o n f i d e n c e that they have the inner s t r e n g t h and r e s o u r c e s to con t inue to be d i f f e r e n t . 14. Most of a l l , o f f e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g , s e n s i t i v i t y , support and acceptance to mothers f o r t h e i r c h o i c e to l i v e apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . S o c i a l Change S t r a t e g i e s Whi le the f o l l o w i n g s tatements are not d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to the r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s , the r e s e a r c h e r formed some o p i n i o n s about what needs to be done to promote adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l 80 mothers . For example, i t i s b e l i e v e d that an important s t r a t e g y in f a c i l i t a t i n g n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers i s to r e -educa te the g e n e r a l p u b l i c in o rder to make t h i s c h o i c e a more a c c e p t a b l e and r e s p e c t e d o p t i o n f o r mothers when encoun te r i n g s e p a r a t i o n or d i v o r c e . The more i n f o r m a t i o n and knowledge peop le have r e g a r d i n g t h i s way of l i f e , the b e t t e r a b l e they w i l l be to unders tand and grasp some of the dynamics of the s i t u a t i o n . The i n t e n t i o n i s tha t under s tand ing w i l l h e l p to remove the s o c i a l st igma a t t a c h e d to the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s c i r c u m s t a n c e . A d d i t i o n a l l y , i t i s b e l i e v e d that i n o rder to f a c i l i t a t e change, i t i s important to impact the v a r i o u s systems i n our s o c i e t y and the l e g a l and e d u c a t i o n a l systems are two key a reas t o approach. The l e g a l system tends to support the s o c i a l norm tha t mothers a re b e t t e r s u i t e d than f a t h e r s f o r c h i l d r e a r i n g because in most c o n t e s t e d cus tody cases the c o u r t s grant cus tody to the mother. A l though emphasis on c h i l d cus tody d e c i s i o n s have changed i n recent t imes from c o n s i d e r i n g on ly the r i g h t s of the mother to the c u r r e n t c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of the best i n t e r e s t of the c h i l d r e n (Beeson, 1984), Pearson and Munson (1984) argue tha t at tempts to implement the best i n t e r e s t concept and to e v a l u a t e pa ren t s on that b a s i s have produced mixed r e s u l t s . A d d i t i o n a l l y , they c l a imed tha t " . . . i n the m a j o r i t y of c o n t e s t e d cus tody c a s e s . . . t h e c o u r t appears to c o n t i n u e to o p e r a t i o n a l i z e the c h i l d ' s best i n t e r e s t i n terms of the f i t n e s s and u n f i t n e s s of the mother" (p. 14). T h i s c l a i m i s c o n s i s t e n t w i th the aggregated Canadian f i g u r e s showing tha t women are awarded cus tody in about n i n e t y - s i x pe rcen t of the cases (McKie, 81 P r e n t i c e , & Reed, 1983). R i ck s (1984) and Weiner (1985) a l s o p o i n t e d out tha t a l though f a t h e r cus tody and j o i n t - c u s t o d y a re becoming i n c r e a s i n g l y r e c o g n i z e d as v i a b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s to the more t r a d i t i o n a l materna l cu s tody , the materna l p r e f e r e n c e s t i l l has g r e a t e r c l a i m as ev idenced by the s t a t i s t i c s : Only about ten pe rcen t of the custody c a s e s , a c c o r d i n g to R i c k s (1984), are not awarded to the mother. Thus, the l e g a l system may i n d i r e c t l y condone the idea that mothers " s h o u l d " r a i s e the c h i l d r e n in ca ses of s e p a r a t i o n or d i v o r c e . I t i s t h e r e f o r e recommended tha t r e - e d u c a t i o n programs in t h i s a rea be implemented in o rder to encourage the members in t h i s f i e l d to r e - e v a l u a t e t h e i r b e l i e f s about the mother ing r o l e . The e d u c a t i o n a l system i s a l s o a pr imary t a r g e t to approach w i th i n f o r m a t i o n about the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo ther ' s c i r c u m s t a n c e . In o rder to promote the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n as an a c c e p t e d op t i on f o r f a m i l i e s of s e p a r a t i o n and d i v o r c e , more i n f o r m a t i o n in the form of l i t e r a t u r e , f i l m s , l e c t u r e s , d i s c u s s i o n s and workshops i s r e q u i r e d . The mass media i s another important area to pursue because of i t s huge i n f l u e n c e and impact on the g e n e r a l p u b l i c . V a r i o u s e d u c a t i o n a l programs about mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n , f o r example, c o u l d be re sea rched and produced, p o r t r a y i n g the e x p e r i e n c e s of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and t h e r e f o r e h e l p i n g to put them in a more r e a l i s t i c and p o s i t i v e l i g h t . Programs of t h i s type c o u l d h e l p to d i s p e l some of the many nega t i ve myths about these women. I t i s a l s o suggested that i n f o r m a t i o n about n o n - c u s t o d i a l , mothers become a v a i l a b l e in l i b r a r i e s and community and 82 r e c r e a t i o n a l f a c i l i t i e s . As w e l l , i t i s recommended that courses and workshops o f f e r i n g r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n about t h i s group of women be designed f o r c o l l e g e s , u n i v e r s i t i e s and community c e n t r e s , promoting q u e s t i o n p e r i o d s , open d i s c u s s i o n , and suggested reading m a t e r i a l . In a d d i t i o n , workshops o f f e r e d to i n d i v i d u a l and fa m i l y c o u n s e l l o r s as w e l l as c o n c i l i a t i o n and d i v o r c e mediation c o u n s e l l o r s , who are l i k e l y to be working with t h i s group of women are important i n order to f a m i l i a r i z e these p r o f e s s i o n a l s with the i s s u e s and concerns c o n f r o n t i n g n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. I n c r e a s i n g l y , more and more women are making the d e c i s i o n to l i v e apart from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . In a d d i t i o n , otlier women are q u e s t i o n i n g whether they should make t h i s d e c i s i o n and q u e s t i o n i n g the s o c i a l and emotional c o s t s i n v o l v e d . I t i s t h e r e f o r e hoped that the r e s u l t s from t h i s r e s e a r c h o f f e r u s e f u l i n f o r m a t i o n that w i l l h e l p others to b e t t e r understand the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother's s i t u a t i o n and the c o n d i t i o n s that f a c i l i t a t e and hinder adjustment f o r them. Furthermore, the d e s i r e i s f o r the recommendations and g u i d e l i n e s to be u s e f u l to n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and to mothers posed with the qu e s t i o n whether to r e t a i n custody or not. A d d i t i o n a l l y , these g u i d e l i n e s p r o v i d e important i n f o r m a t i o n f o r c o u n s e l l o r s who are working with t h i s group of women. 83 CHAPTER VI SUMMARY Summary of F i n d i n g s I t has been the o b j e c t of t h i s s tudy to i d e n t i f y the f a c t o r s a f f e c t i n g adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers . The f i n d i n g s suggest some answers to the major q u e s t i o n , "What c o n d i t i o n s f a c i l i t a t e and h inder adjustment f o r mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n ? " A number of f a c t o r s emerged which a re seen to a f f e c t the adjustment p r o c e s s f o r these women. Data were c o l l e c t e d through the use of the c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t t e c h n i q u e , an i n - d e p t h i n t e r v i e w method. A n a l y s i s i n v o l v e d examining the c o l l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s fo r s i m i l a r i t i e s and common themes from which a ca tegory system was deve loped that summarized and d e s c r i b e d the data in a c o n c i s e and comprehensive way. Three major or s u p e r o r d i n a t e and f i f t e e n ba s i c or subo rd ina te c a t e g o r i e s evo l ved from the d a t a . By p l a c i n g each subord ina te ca tego ry i n t o whichever s u p e r o r d i n a t e ca tego ry was most a p p r o p r i a t e , a p i c t u r e of the important a spec t s a f f e c t i n g adjustment emerged. There were 212 c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s i d e n t i f i e d by the 17 women who p a r t i c i p a t e d in t h i s s tudy . These women r e p o r t e d 134 f a c i l i t a t i v e (63.0%) and 78 h i n d e r i n g (37.0%) i n c i d e n t s . And, by f a r , the most f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t was support from o t h e r s . In f a c t , of the 134 f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s , about t h i r t y - f o u r pe rcen t (34.3%) formed t h i s c a t e g o r y . A d d i t i o n a l l y , support 84 from f r i e n d s was i d e n t i f i e d w i th more f requency (50.2%) than support from f am i l y (17.4%), c h i l d r e n (13.0%), or ex-husbands (2 .2%) . C o n v e r s e l y , n e g a t i v e judgment and l a ck of support from o t h e r s was r e p o r t e d to be the most h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t w i th t h i r t y - t h r e e percent (33.3%) of the 78 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s f a l l i n g i n t o t h i s c a t e g o r y . As w e l l , ' E x c l u s i o n from the C h i l d r e n ' s L i f e ' was i d e n t i f i e d as a major f a c t o r h i n d e r i n g the adjustment p roces s w i th about t w e n t y - s i x pe rcen t (25.6%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s forming t h i s c a t e g o r y . I t i s noteworthy tha t the respondents i d e n t i f i e d themselves (23.1%), as w e l l as t h e i r c h i l d r e n (19.4%), and t h e i r f r i e n d s (19.4%) as be ing most r e s p o n s i b l e f o r f a c i l i t a t i n g t h e i r ad jus tment , wh i le t h e i r ex-husbands (23.1%) were r e p o r t e d to be most r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h i n d e r i n g adjus tment . A c r i t i c a l time f o r these women rega rd ing the events a f f e c t i n g adjustment tended to occur w i t h i n the f i r s t two year s a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n from t h e i r c h i l d r e n , w i th about s i x t y - n i n e pe rcen t (69.4%) of the f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t s and about s e v e n t y - s i x percent (75.7%) of the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s o c c u r r i n g d u r i n g that t ime p e r i o d . A d d i t i o n a l l y , a c r i t i c a l t ime in terms of i n c i d e n t s h i n d e r i n g adjustment o c c u r r e d immediate ly a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n , w i th about t h i r t y - t w o percent (32.1%) of a l l h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s r e p o r t e d to occur at that t ime. In terms of the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s , by f a r , the l a r g e s t of the three was ' I n t e r p e r s o n a l F a c t o r s ' w i th s i x t y - s i x (66.0%) percent of the 15 s u b - c a t e g o r i e s f a l l i n g i n t o t h i s major c a t e g o r y . T h i s demonstrates the importance these respondents p l a c e d on i n t e r a c t i o n s w i th o the r s as a f f e c t i n g t h e i r 85 adjustment. Summary of Recommendations There are v a r i o u s aspects that c o n t r i b u t e to the w e l l - b e i n g of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. The f o l l o w i n g i s a summary of the suggested s t r a t e g i e s f o r c o u n s e l l o r s and other p r o f e s s i o n a l s working with these women: a. Become f a m i l i a r with the aspects a f f e c t i n g adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. b. D e f i n e mothering i n new ways by e x p l o r i n g and c l a r i f y i n g the mothering r o l e . As w e l l , examine the s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l p r e s s u r e s to conform to the t r a d i t i o n a l mother r o l e . c. Deal with the g u i l t and d e n i g r a t i o n these women experience and b u i l d on t h e i r s t r e n g t h s i n order to enhance sel f - e s t e e m . d. D i s c u s s the importance of a v o i d i n g negative judgment as a v i a b l e o p t i o n . e. Encourage these women to f a m i l i a r i z e themselves with t h e i r l e g a l r i g h t s r e g a r d i n g v i s i t a t i o n and access. f. Provide a support group f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers as a way to put these women i n touch with each other. g. O f f e r career and l i f e - s t y l e p l a n n i n g programs. h. Educate both parents i n order to f a c i l i t a t e c o n s t r u c t i v e communication p a t t e r n s . i . O f f e r hope to these women, emphasizing that they are not alone i n t h e i r s i t u a t i o n and that they have the inner resources to deal with the i s s u e s they f a c e . j O f f e r support, understanding and acceptance to t h i s group of women f o r t h e i r c h o i c e to l i v e apart from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . In a d d i t i o n to the above recommendations, i t i s suggested by t h i s r e s e a r c h e r to approach the l e g a l and e d u c a t i o n a l systems with r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n about mothers l i v i n g apart from t h e i r 86 c h i l d r e n . As w e l l , i t i s recommended that programs about n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers be produced by the media i n o rder to f a m i l i a r i z e the gene ra l p u b l i c w i th the exper i ences of these women. Recommendations f o r Fu tu re Research Many a d d i t i o n a l q u e s t i o n s a rose wh i le working w i th the d a t a . Among these q u e s t i o n s are the f o l l o w i n g : a . Does the age of the mother without custody have an e f f e c t on the type of c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s repor ted? b. Does the age of the c h i l d r e n a f f e c t the type of i n c i d e n t s repor ted? c . Does the sex of the c h i l d r e n a f f e c t the types of i n c i d e n t s repor ted? d . Does the l e n g t h of s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n i n f l u e n c e the type of c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t s repor ted? I t i s hoped that o the r s w i l l c o n t i n u e work in t h i s a rea by e x p l o r i n g o ther a spec t s of the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n . The m a j o r i t y of s t u d i e s examine the impact of d i v o r c e on the s i n g l e p a r e n t , and t h e r e f o r e , ' l i t t l e i s known about n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. A d d i t i o n a l l y , l i t t l e i s known about the e f f e c t s of a mothers ' absence f o r the c h i l d of d i v o r c e . I t would a l s o be of i n t e r e s t to conduct s t u d i e s f o c u s i n g on the f a c t o r s which f a c i l i t a t e and h inder adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l f a t h e r s and to compare the r e s u l t s w i th the r e s u l t s from t h i s r e s e a r c h . As w e l l , i t would be v a l u a b l e to study the a s p e c t s a f f e c t i n g adjustment f o r the s i n g l e parent f a t h e r . I t i s recommended that s i m i l a r s t u d i e s be conducted on 87 other groups that s o c i e t y a t t a c h e s a negative s o c i a l stigma t o, such as the homosexual p o p u l a t i o n and c h i l d l e s s c o u p l e s . The re s e a r c h e r may d i s c o v e r that these people i d e n t i f y the same types of i n c i d e n t s as the women i n t h i s study and t h e r e f o r e , the i m p l i c a t i o n s and recommendations f o r h e l p i n g n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers may a l s o be a p p l i c a b l e to other groups with l i f e - s t y l e s d e v i a t i n g from t r a d i t i o n a l s o c i e t y . A d d i t o n a l l y , s i m i l a r s t u d i e s on other c u l t u r e s are important and r e l e v a n t because the i n v e s t i g a t o r may f i n d d i f f e r e n t c o n d i t i o n s a f f e c t i n g adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. Since one's c u l t u r e shapes s o c i a l a t t i t u d e s and v a l u e s , then i n v e s t i g a t i n g the i n c i d e n t s a f f e c t i n g adjustment f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers l i v i n g i n a c u l t u r e that does not promote the b e l i e f that mothers are b e t t e r s u i t e d f o r c h i l d r e a r i n g would be of i n t e r e s t . And f i n a l l y , s i n c e the r e s u l t s of t h i s study are l i m i t e d i n t h e i r g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y , f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h i s r e q u i r e d to co n f i r m t h i s study u s i n g a l a r g e r sample with a more v a r i e d composition. In summary, many other kinds of s t u d i e s on mothers l i v i n g a p a r t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n are necessary f o r the f u t u r e as the area i s v i r t u a l l y untouched at the present time. Co n c l u s i o n s Mothers who are l i v i n g apart from t h e i r c h i l d r e n are on the i n c r e a s e . That i s , although only about eleven percent of c h i l d r e n of s e p a r a t i o n and d i v o r c e l i v e with t h e i r f a t h e r s ( S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 1983), the recent i n c r e a s e of d i v o r c e s has d r a m a t i c a l l y r a i s e d the number of f a t h e r s with custody. In 88 1970, f o r example, there were 29,775 d i v o r c e s in Canada and in 1982 t h i s f i g u r e rose to over 70,000, a c l i m b of about 135% in the 12 year p e r i o d ( S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 1985). A l though the number of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers i s growing, these women have s t i l l chosen an uncommon and n o n - t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e - s t y l e i n our s o c i e t y . Thus, they u s u a l l y f ace many more d i f f i c u l t i e s than f a t h e r s who are l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n in regard to s o c i e t y ' s acceptance of them (Doudna, 1982; F i s c h e r and Cardea, 1981; G r e i f , 1985; 1987; K o e h l e r , 1982; L u e p n i t z , 1978, 1982; Rowlands, 1980; V e e v e r s , 1980; Weiss , 1979). And, even though there are more and more n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers who are c h a l l e n g i n g the s o c i a l l y a s s i gned r o l e s f o r c h i l d r e a r i n g , they a re c o n t i n u a l l y be ing c o n f r o n t e d w i th how hard s o c i e t y works to d i s cou rage t h i s e x p r e s s i o n , thus making adjustment f o r them d i f f i c u l t and s t r e s s f u l . S i nce there are no e s t a b l i s h e d support groups s p e c i f i c a l l y des i gned f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers , and very few peop le who are f a m i l i a r w i th t h e i r s i t u a t i o n , these women are o f t e n l e f t f e e l i n g as i f t he re i s no one to t u r n to who unders tands t h e i r c i r c u m s t a n c e . I t i s t h e r e f o r e important f o r mothers l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n to have access t o q u a l i f i e d c o u n s e l l o r s who are f a m i l i a r w i t h , and who unders tand t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e . T h i s c l a i m i s suppor ted by one of the women in t h i s s tudy who r e l a t e d , in t y p i c a l comment, how h e l p f u l i t was f o r her to have someone f a m i l i a r w i th her s i t u a t i o n to t a l k w i t h . Dur ing the i n t e r v i e w , fo r example, she s t a t e d , " T h i s i s c a t h a r t i c . I t ' s j u s t been a year s i n c e I l e f t the k i d s and w i t h i n tha t time I ' ve been wondering how a l l t h i s s t u f f tha t I ' ve been going through wi th my ex-husband and the k id s has a f f e c t e d me. And not 89 hav ing t a l k e d about i t or r e - l i v e d i t , which i s what I'm do ing now, I guess I'm beg inn ing to r e a l i z e what a s t r a i n t h i s a l l has been on me. And I guess my mis take i s that I ' ve t r i e d to d e a l w i th a l l t h i s s t u f f my se l f , not t a l k i n g about i t w i th anyone e l s e . Now I r e a l i z e how h e l p f u l t h i s i s to t a l k about i t w i th someone, e s p e c i a l l y w i th someone who has expe r i ence w i th the same t h i n g . " Because of the above reasons suppo r t i n g the need f o r r e sou rce s f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers , i t i s important f o r c o u n s e l l o r s to f a m i l i a r i z e themselves wi th the needs and i s sue s c o n f r o n t i n g these women in o rder to p r o v i d e q u a l i f i e d and competent support and s e r v i c e s f o r them. The data in t h i s paper , t h e r e f o r e , have important i m p l i c a t i o n s . A c o u n s e l l o r , f o r i n s t a n c e , who i s aware of the f a c t o r s f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mother ' s s i t u a t i o n can more r e a d i l y h e l p t h i s group of women d e a l w i th the d i f f i c u l t i e s they f a c e . C o r r e s p o n d i n g l y , the c o u n s e l l o r who i s a t tuned to the c o n d i t i o n s a f f e c t i n g the n o n - c u s t o d i a l mo the r ' s r o l e can o f f e r i n v a l u a b l e knowledge, support and re sources to these women. T h e r e f o r e , the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of the f a c t o r s f a c i l i t a t i n g and h i n d e r i n g adjustment f o r t h i s group i s important f o r the advancement and improvement of s e r v i c e s f o r them. A d d i t i o n a l l y , the data from t h i s r e s e a r c h a re important f o r workshop l e a d e r s in h e l p i n g them deve lop r e l e v a n t programs f o r women in t h i s s i t u a t i o n . As w e l l , the i n f o r m a t i o n i s an important re source f o r c o n c i l i a t i o n and d i v o r c e med ia t i on c o u n s e l l o r s in h e l p i n g them to work more s e n s i t i v e l y and e f f e c t i v e l y w i th t h i s group of women. The data from t h i s r e s e a r c h are t h e r e f o r e an important re source fo r i n d i v i d u a l , f a m i l y and d i v o r c e med ia t i on c o u n s e l l o r s working w i th mothers who are l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r 90 c h i l d r e n because t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n i s seen as a way t o i n c r e a s e the awareness and g e n e r a l knowledge r e g a r d i n g t h e problems and d i f f i c u l t i e s c o n f r o n t i n g t h e s e women. S i g h t must not be l o s t t h a t t h e s e f i n d i n g s have come from a s m a l l group of women who v o l u n t e e r e d f o r t h i s s t u d y and t h a t not a l l n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers' c i r c u m s t a n c e s w i l l f i t t h e s i t u a t i o n d e s c r i b e d i n t h i s paper. Thus, i t i s emphasized t h a t the f i n d i n g s from t h i s r e s e a r c h must be c o n s i d e r e d t e n t a t i v e , due t o the s m a l l sample s i z e and l i m i t e d c o m p o s i t i o n of p a r t i c i p a n t s . D e s p i t e t h e s e l i m i t a t i o n s , however, i t i s hoped t h a t t h i s r e s e a r c h o f f e r s u s e f u l i n f o r m a t i o n f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and c o u n s e l l o r s who f i n d t h e m s e l v e s working w i t h t h e s e women. 91 NOTES 1. Each of the four independent r a t e r s were t r a i n e d in the same way and g i ven the f o l l o w i n g i n s t r u c t i o n s : "Your job i s to c a t e g o r i z e 106 randomly s e l e c t e d i n c i d e n t s in terms of f a c i l i t a t i n g or h i n d e r i n g adjustment f o r the sample of n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. There are 67 f a c i l i t a t i v e and 39 h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . We w i l l beg in w i th the h i n d e r i n g i n c i d e n t s . Here i s a l i s t of the 5 h i n d e r i n g s u b - c a t e g o r i e s and on these index ca rds a re the 39 i n c i d e n t s t o be c l a s s i f i e d . F i r s t , read the names of each ca tego ry and ask any q u e s t i o n s you may have r e g a r d i n g t h e i r meaning. Now read each i n c i d e n t and c a t e g o r i z e each one . " When t h i s task was completed the r a t e r a p p l i e d the same procedure to the 67 f a c i l i t a t i v e i n c i d e n t s , c a t e g o r i z i n g them i n t o the 10 f a c i l i t a t i v e s u b - c a t e g o r i e s . R e l i a b i l i t y t e s t s f o r the s u p e r o r d i n a t e c a t e g o r i e s proceeded i n the same f a s h i o n w i th the four r a t e r s . 2. To d a t e , there are no support groups s p e c i f i c a l l y des i gned f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers in the Vancouver or su r round ing a r e a . However, t he re are some groups l e d by p r o f e s s i o n a l s or s e l f - h e l p groups in e x i s t e n c e in the U n i t e d S t a t e s . On the west c o a s t , Diana Case l eads workshops f o r n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers and on the east c o a s t , Susan Fa lk and Joan Lak in conduct workshops f o r these women. A d d i t i o n a l l y , Cathy Knapp i s the p r e s i d e n t of an o r g a n i z a t i o n based in Texas . T h i s o r g a n i z a t i o n , w i th a membership of over 1,000 n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers , p u b l i s h e s a 92 b i - m o n t h l y n e w s l e t t e r o f f e r i n g u p - t o - d a t e i n f o r m a t i o n about n o n - c u s t o d i a l mothers. For more i n f o r m a t i o n r e g a r d i n g t h i s o r g a n i z a t i o n , w r i t e t o : 93 REFERENCES A b a r b a n e l , A. (1979). Shared p a r e n t i n g a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n and d i v o r c e . 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E . (1980). C h i l d l e s s by c h o i c e . T o r o n t o : B u t t e r w o r t h . Weiner, B.A. (1985). An overv iew of c h i l d custody laws. H o s p i t a l and Community P s y c h i a t r y , 36 (8 ) , 838-843. Weiss , R. (1979). Going i t a l o n e . New York: Ba s i c Books. Wes to f f , C . F . , & Ryder, N.B. (1977). The c o n t r a c e p t i v e  r e v o l u t i o n . New J e r s e y : P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . Woolsey, L.K. (1986). The c r i t i c a l i n c i d e n t t e c h n i q u e : An i n n o v a t i v e q u a l i t a t i v e r e s e a r c h method. Canadian J o u r n a l of  C o u n s e l l i n g , 20 (4 ) , 242-254. A P P E N D I C E S 98 Appendix A NONCUSTODIAL MOTHERS WANTED I am do ing r e s e a r c h f o r my M a s t e r ' s t h e s i s a t UBC and r e q u i r e v o l u n t e e r s f o r my s tudy . I am i n t e r e s t e d in women who are l i v i n g apar t from t h e i r c h i l d r e n . I w i l l be conduc t i n g one hour i n t e r v i e w s w i th each p a r t i c i p a n t . I f you a re i n t e r e s t e d , p l e a s e c o n t a c t L o r i La r sen f o r f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n . 99 Appendix B Consent Form I , consent to p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h i s study i n v e s t i g a t i n g the c o n d i t i o n s tha t f a c i l i t a t e and h inder adjustment to the r o l e of n o n c u s t o d i a l mother ing . T h i s r e s e a r c h i s conducted by L o r i L a r s e n , a M a s t e r ' s degree s tudent in C o u n s e l l i n g Psychology at UBC and s u p e r v i s e d by Dr . Robert Tolsma, f a c u l t y a d v i s o r . I n format ion w i l l be aud io tape reco rded dur ing the i n t e r v i e w s e s s i o n . T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l be t r a n s c r i b e d onto index ca rds at a l a t e r date at which time the aud io r e c o r d i n g w i l l be e r a s e d . No names w i l l be used and the r e s p o n d e n t ' s i d e n t i t y w i l l remain c o n f i d e n t i a l . The t o t a l amount of t ime r e q u i r e d by the p a r t i c i p a n t i s approx imate ly one hour. If t h e r e a re any q u e s t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g the p r o c e d u r e s , the i n v e s t i g a t o r i s a v a i l a b l e to answer them. The p a r t i c i p a n t has the r i g h t to r e f u s e p a r t i c i p a t i o n or withdraw from t h i s study without consequences . P a r t i c i p a t i o n i s v o l u n t a r y . S igned Date 100 Appendix C Demographic Q u e s t i o n n a i r e 1. What i s your present age? 2. What i s your present address? 3. What i s your present occupa t i on ? 4. What i s your present income? 5. What i s the h i ghes t l e v e l of educa t i on that you have r e c e i v e d ? 6. How many c h i l d r e n do you have? 7. What a re your c h i l d r e n ' s ages? 8. How long ago d i d you separa te from your spouse? 9. How long ago d i d you s top l i v i n g w i th your c h i l d r e n ? 10. How f a r away from you do your c h i l d r e n l i v e ? 11. How o f t e n do you see your c h i l d r e n ? 12. How o f t e n do you have te lephone c o n t a c t wi th your c h i l d r e n ? 13. Are you working? F u l l / p a r t - t i m e ? 14. Are you in schoo l ? 15. Are you i n v o l v e d in v o l u n t e e r work? 16. Are you c u r r e n t l y in c o u n s e l l i n g or therapy? If so, i n group or i n d i v i d u a l ? 17. Have you r e c e i v e d c o u n s e l l i n g or therapy in the pas t ? If so, group or i n d i v i d u a l ? 18. Is or was your c o u n s e l l i n g or therapy r e l a t e d to h e l p i n g you ad ju s t to l i v i n g apar t from your c h i l d r e n ? 19. Are you r e - m a r r i e d or l i v i n g w i th someone? 101 Appendix D D e f i n i t i o n of Subord ina te C a t e g o r i e s  F a c i l i t a t i v e C a t e g o r i e s 1. SOCIAL SUPPORT R e c e i v i n g support and e x p e r i e n c i n g a sense of acceptance from f r i e n d s , f a m i l y and o t h e r s . "When he s a i d he wasn ' t a sk ing me i f I l o ved my k id s because he knew I d i d . I mean, to me, that was p r o f o u n d l y important because tha t meant tha t he accep ted me. I guess I thought tha t peop le d i d n ' t know I l o ved my k i d s . So I u s u a l l y had to e x p l a i n to them a l l the t ime that I d i d . So the. f a c t tha t he knew that I l o v e d them, as a g i v e n , was such a burden l i f t e d o f f me." "He l e t me know that he thought I was a f u l l person and a worthy p e r s o n . So even though I wasn ' t l i v i n g wi th my c h i l d r e n , he l e t me know tha t he accep ted me and that he lp s a g rea t d e a l to f e e l tha t you are w o r t h w h i l e . " 2. INCLUSION IN THE CHILDREN'S L IFE Having c o n t a c t w i th the c h i l d r e n , the c h i l d r e n ' s s choo l or the c h i l d r e n hav ing c o n t a c t w i th her f a m i l y . "What was h e l p f u l was I had my son w i th me f o r the summer. I was a b l e to r e a l l y p h y s i c a l l y r e - c o n n e c t w i th him. And we were 1 02 a b l e to be w i th each other l i k e two peop le l i v i n g t o g e t h e r . " " Tak ing a h o l i d a y wi th the g i r l s . That was another f a c i l i t a t i n g i n c i d e n t . We went camping f o r t h r e e weeks and i t was fun and j u s t p l a i n r e l a x i n g to be toge ther fo r tha t l e n g t h of t ime . . . .Wha t was h e l p f u l about i t ? W e l l , j u s t be ing t o g e t h e r . J u s t be ing w i th them and g e t t i n g to know them in tha t way. 3. REASSURANCE THAT THE CHILDREN ARE WELL-CARED FOR Being t o l d by o ther s that the c h i l d r e n were happy and w e l l - c a r e d f o r by t h e i r f a t h e r . " I t he lped to hear the k i d s say they were happy l i v i n g wi th t h e i r dad. I mean, I c o u l d see f o r myse l f tha t they were do ing w e l l , but I was concerned tha t maybe I was j u s t hoping t h i n g s were f i n e . So i t was r e a s s u r i n g to hear them say tha t they were f i n e . " 4. REGULAR CONTACT WITH THE CHILDREN Having c o n t a c t and sha r i n g t ime wi th the c h i l d r e n on a r e gu l a r b a s i s . "My son comes and s tays w i th me every week-end. That r e a l l y makes i t e a s i e r f o r me. I need tha t t ime wi th him each week." 5 . ASSERTION WITH EX-HUSBAND D i r e c t l y s t a t i n g what she wanted from her ex-husband rega rd ing the c h i l d r e n . 103 "I wanted to be t r e a t e d f a i r l y . I d i d n ' t want to be c a l l e d as a b a b y s i t t e r f o r him at a moment's n o t i c e . I t h i n k a great d e a l of r e spec t was a ch ieved because I made i t q u i t e c l e a r to him tha t he c o u l d n ' t c a l l me at the l a s t minute to b a b y s i t . So what happened was I ga ined h i s r e spec t and he s t a r t e d to phone to ask me i n s t e a d of demand that I b a b y s i t . " 6. HAVING A HOME THAT IS A FAMILY PLACE Having a home atmosphere that i s comfo r t ab le f o r her and her c h i l d r e n . " I t was f i n a l l y f i n d i n g a p l a c e that was w e l l s u i t e d to our needs. I was much more r e l a x e d wi th the k id s than I was i n the apartment . I mean, we had more room and more freedom i n the house as opposed to the apartment l i v i n g . Yeah, my home was a home fo r them and I began to f e e l l i k e we were a f a m i l y when we were t o g e t h e r . " "My daughter f e e l s r e a l l y easy about coming to my house, and she l o ve s to b r i n g her f r i e n d s over too because I have such a n i c e p l a c e f o r them to come t o . " 7. ACCEPTANCE OF HER DECISION TO LIVE APART FROM HER CHILDREN B e l i e v i n g that she made the r i g h t d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n and a c c e p t i n g that d e c i s i o n . "We l a i d out the pros and cons of l i v i n g apar t from my c h i l d r e n and I r e a l i z e d tha t the c h o i c e I made was a good one. I was 104 more a b l e to accept tha t I made that d e c i s i o n and that i t was a v a l i d d e c i s i o n . " .8. EVASIVE BEHAVIOR Tak ing a c t i o n to avo id the pa in r e s u l t i n g from l i v i n g apar t from her c h i l d r e n . "I j u s t had to s top t h i n k i n g about my k id s a l l the t ime . I t was c o n s t a n t , day and n i g h t . . . . S o I got a job and took some cour se s at s c h o o l . That r e a l l y he lped me tremendous ly because I was i n v o l v e d and a c t i v e w i th o ther t h i ng s and I wasn ' t d w e l l i n g on my k i d s a l l the t i m e . . . . I was much h a p p i e r , l o o k i n g forward r a t h e r than back . " "I mentioned that I found i t r e a l l y d i f f i c u l t to t e l l peop le about my s i t u a t i o n , so I on l y t o l d a few peop le whose r e a c t i o n s I c o u l d p r e d i c t and d e a l w i t h . . . . I d i d n ' t want the mi sunders tand ings or the n e g a t i v i t y because I j u s t had too hard a t ime d e a l i n g wi th i t . So what was h e l p f u l was that I no longer had to dea l wi th these types of r e a c t i o n s . " 9. REMINISCING ABOUT THE CHILDREN T h i n k i n g about the p o s i t i v e e x p e r i e n c e s she had w i th her c h i l d r e n . " I ' l l go, every now and then , to a l i t t l e park he and I used to go to p l a y t e n n i s and I ' l l maybe s i t t he re r e - l i v i n g the c o n n e c t i o n w i th him. I c o u l d a lmost f e e l my s on ' s presence 105 the re w i th me. I t ' s that c o n n e c t i o n tha t i s so h e l p f u l f o r me." "When I l ooked through that photo album of me and the k i d s , I r e a l i z e d that we had a l o t of good t imes toge ther and that I was a good mother. I t was r e a l l y neat l o o k i n g at a l l those photographs of us and t h i n k i n g about a l l the good t imes we had t o g e t h e r . " 10. EXPRESSED EMOTIONS A l l o w i n g h e r s e l f to exper ience and expres s her f e e l i n g s . "One day I c a l l e d a g i r l f r i e n d and I s t a r t e d t e l l i n g her how angry I was at my ex-husband. And the more I t a l k e d , the madder I got at h i m . . . . I t was h e l p f u l because I r e a l i z e d j u s t how angry I r e a l l y was and I got i t ou t . It was a b i g r e l e a s e . " H i n d e r i n g C a t e g o r i e s 11. NEGATIVE JUDGMENT/LACK OF SOCIAL SUPPORT C r i t i c a l and d i s p a r a g i n g remarks as w e l l as d i s a p p r o v a l from f r i e n d s , f a m i l y and o t h e r s . "When my ex-husband and I s epa ra ted I wrote to h i s mother t e l l i n g her about the s e p a r a t i o n and that the k i d s would be l i v i n g w i th h im. And she wrote back s a y i n g , ' Y o u ' r e not a good mother or w i fe and g i ve me back the Chr i s tmas p re sen t I gave y o u . ' And that was t h a t , s h e ' s never spoken to me s i n c e . I 106 mean, my husband and I were mar r i ed f o r 16 year s and I was c l o s e to h i s f a m i l y . And then , a l l of the sudden I l o s t h a l f my f a m i l y . I t was gone because she was judgmental of me and then she cut me o f f . So, that one s t i l l h u r t s . I t h u r t s a l o t . " "They p re judged me about my s i t u a t i o n . I e i t h e r had to be extremely b r i t t l e so the judgment d i d n ' t hur t so much, or I 'd end up t r y i n g to be r e a l l y n i c e . I guess what I'm t r y i n g to say i s tha t I . d i d n ' t f e e l tha t i t was okay to j u s t be me. I had to t r y to e i t h e r p l e a s e peop le or j u s t say, ' screw y o u ' , and I'm the type of person who spent most of my l i f e t r y i n g to p l ea se p e o p l e . And what I found out i s that i t d o e s n ' t work. So screw them, screw s o c i e t y f o r judg ing me. T h e y ' r e not the ones who have to l i v e my l i f e , I am." 12. EXCLUSION FROM THE CHILDREN'S L IFE F e e l i n g r e j e c t e d , i s o l a t e d or l e f t out of the c h i l d r e n ' s l i f e . "I wasn ' t in formed about my k ids s choo l Chr i s tmas c o n c e r t . I wanted to be i n c l u d e d in t h e i r s choo l a c t i v i t i e s , but I wa sn ' t . So I f e l t as i f I wasn ' t a decent and c a r i n g mother. I f e l t as i f I d i d n ' t c o u n t . " "He wou ldn ' t a l l ow me to go to my d a u g h t e r ' s g r a d u a t i o n . I knew I had every r i g h t to go, but i f I d i d , I was scared h e ' d cause a b i g scene and I d i d n ' t want to r i s k t h a t . So I d i d n ' t go. I d i d n ' t get to go to her b i g day. I f e l t r e a l l y l e f t out , you know, and a l s o power less to do any th ing about i t . " 107 13. POVERTY Not hav ing enough money to make the c h i l d r e n ' s v i s i t s more c o m f o r t a b l e . "My husband would not g i ve me any maintenance whatsoever because I was the one to leave h im. So I had a b s o l u t e l y no money. I went from upper middle c l a s s t o p o v e r t y . It was r e a l l y w ierd because the k i d s were used to t h i s enormous west coas t cedar and g l a s s house and i t j u s t d i d n ' t f e e l r i g h t to them to be at my l i t t l e p l a c e . Our v i s i t s were r e a l l y uncomfor tab le . I c o u l d n ' t even a f f o r d to feed them. T h e y ' d come over and I 'd say, ' W e l l , you can have a g l a s s of water , but I c a n ' t o f f e r you any th ing e l s e because I d o n ' t have a n y t h i n g e l s e . ' L i t e r a l l y , t h a t ' s the way i t was." 14. GUILT Having a sense of wrong-doing i n v o l v i n g emot iona l c o n f l i c t . "My son asked me and hoped f o r my ex-husband, h i s dad, and me to get back toge ther again and i t was hear t wrenching knowing tha t I c o u l d n ' t do what my son wanted so much. That I c o u l d n ' t be that i d e a l , l i t t l e happy f a m i l y u n i t that he so longed f o r . And what was so hard was that i t pe rpe tua ted my g u i l t , knowing tha t my son was w i sh ing fo r something that wasn ' t go ing to o c c u r . 15. EVASIVE BEHAVIOR A v o i d i n g the pa in she f e e l s as a r e s u l t of l i v i n g apar t from the c h i l d r e n . 108 " T h i s i s an ongoing i n c i d e n t . I a v o i d t a l k i n g w i th my son about why he i s l i v i n g w i th h i s dad. T h i s causes a l o t of t e n s i o n between us , but I j u s t c a n ' t do i t . I'm a f r a i d to b r i n g the s u b j e c t up. I t h i n k we ' re both a f r a i d to b r i n g i t up. So I a v o i d t a l k i n g about i t w i th h i m . " "I d i d n ' t want anybody to know about my s i t u a t i o n . I p re tended that I had a happy l i t t l e f a m i l y . I l i e d . I put up a b i g f r o n t . It was very s t r e s s f u l on me because I c o u l d n ' t s o c i a l i z e wi th anyone at work. I c o u l d n ' t l e t my guard down.. . . I c o u l d n ' t get c l o s e to anybody. " 1 09 Appendix E D e f i n i t i o n of Supero rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s 1. INTERPERSONAL FACTORS R e l a t i n g to a spec t s of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the p a r t i c i p a n t and another person or pe r son s . 2. INTRAPERSONAL FACTORS R e l a t i n g to a spec t s w i t h i n the i n d i v i d u a l . 3. EXTERNAL FACTORS F a c t o r s r e l a t i n g to c i r c u m s t a n t i a l a spec t s of the s i t u a t i o n . 110 Appendix F F u l l - l e n g t h F a c i l i t a t i n g I n c i den t and I t s S i m p l i f i e d c o u n t e r p a r t T r a n s c r i p t i o n #1 Respondent " W e l l , my son and I take walks now. L i k e t h i s one t ime we were t a k i n g a long walk down by the r i v e r and sooner or l a t e r he began to t a l k about what was b o t h e r i n g him and tha t r e a l l y made me f e e l good that he f e l t c l o s e enough to me to open up. It was him opening up to me that was so h e l p f u l . L e t t i n g me i n t o h i s l i f e . " I n te r v i ewer "So the g e n e r a l c i r cums tances l e a d i n g up to t h i s i n c i d e n t w e r e . . . ? " Respondent " W e l l , my p l a c e was sma l l and when he and h i s s i s t e r came fo r a v i s i t , t h e y ' d share a room. There was no p r i v a c y . So p r e t t y soon, he s t a r t e d to compla in tha t he never had a chance to t a l k w i th me a l o n e . So what we s t a r t e d to do was to take these long walks and tha t was our t ime toge ther to t a l k about whatever he wanted to t a l k a b o u t . " I n te r v i ewer "And how long a f t e r you stopped l i v i n g with your c h i l d r e n d i d 111. t h i s i n c i d e n t o c c u r ? " Respondent "Oh, tha t was p robab ly two and o n e - h a l f years a f t e r . " I n te rv iewer "So what happened that was so h e l p f u l was t a k i n g the walk w i th your son and him opening up w i th y o u . " Respondent "Yeah. Ju s t be ing together f o r a l e n g t h of t ime, t a l k i n g and sha r i n g what was on h i s m ind . " I n te rv iewer "And what was i t about t a k i n g the walk wi th him and him opening up that was so h e l p f u l to you?" Respondent " J u s t that he d i d t a l k and open up w i th me. I guess because of that I f e l t much c l o s e r to h im. He r e a l l y shared p e r s o n a l l y wi th me, and I f e l t as i f he was l e t t i n g me be pa r t of an important p a r t of h i s l i f e . " I n te rv iewer "And how d i d t h i n g s change f o r you as a r e s u l t of t h i s i n c i d e n t wi th your son?" Respondent 1 1 2 " W e l l , I r e a l i z e d that i f he and I can get away and walk, h e ' d f e e l f r e e to open up about what was b o t h e r i n g h im. I guess what changed was that our r e l a t i o n s h i p improved. He wasn ' t so b o t t l e d up, wanting to have t ime a lone with me and not g e t t i n g i t . We make sure that we take the time to take walks toge ther when he v i s i t s . And now, i t ' s a very important t ime f o r u s . " I n te r v i ewer "And who i s i n v o l v e d in t h i s i n c i d e n t ? " Respondent "My s o n . " Fo l l ow-Up Ques t i ons 1. What were the g e n e r a l c i r cums tances l e a d i n g up to the  i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g ? Her son comp la i n i ng about not hav ing time a l one w i th he r . 2. How long a f t e r s e p a r a t i o n from the c h i l d r e n d i d the i n c i d e n t  occur? Two and o n e - h a l f y e a r s . 3. What happened that was h e l p f u l ? Her son s h a r i n g h i s p e r s o n a l f e e l i n g s wi th h e r . 4. What was i t about the i n c i d e n t tha t was h e l p f u l ? (Source) F e e l i n g c l o s e r to her son and i n c l u d e d i n h i s p e r s o n a l l i f e . 113 5. What changed as a r e s u l t of the i n c i d e n t ? She made a p o i n t of s e t t i n g t ime a s i d e f o r her and her son to take walks toge ther d u r i n g h i s v i s i t s . 6. Who i s i d e n t i f i e d as the person r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t  o c c u r r i n g ? (Agent) Her son. Summary of the i n c i d e n t F e e l i n g i n c l u d e d in her s o n ' s l i f e when he c o n f i d e d in h e r . 1 14 F u l l - l e n g t h F a c i l i t a t i v e I nc iden t and I t s S i m p l i f i e d Counterpar t T r a n s c r i p t i o n #2 Respondent " S p e c i f i c a l l y t h e r e was the Chr i s tmas p a r t y . I t was j u s t a week be fo re Chr i s tmas and Chr i s tmas i s always a tough t ime f o r me. I wanted to be w i th my k id s and had i n v i t e d them o v e r , but they c o u l d n ' t come. So f e e l i n g that empt iness , be ing wi thout them at tha t t ime. And then t e l l i n g my f r i e n d about how I f e l t and then my f r i e n d i n v i t e d me to her p l a c e f o r Ch r i s tmas . So I a r ranged to go to her Chr i s tmas p a r t y . And what was r e a l l y important to me was that I knew I had her when I was f e e l i n g so low about my k i d s . I r e a l i z e d tha t I was not a l one at Ch r i s tmas . I was w i th my f r i e n d . I t was l i k e be ing w i th another type of f a m i l y , so I d i d n ' t f e e l so b a d . " I n te rv iewer "What were the genera l c i r cums tance s l e a d i n g up to t h i s i n c i d e n t ? " Respondent " W e l l , not be ing ab le to be w i th my k id s at a t ime that i t was important f o r .me to be w i th f a m i l y . I was f e e l i n g p r e t t y bad about t h a t . My f r i e n d knew how I f e l t and so she i n v i t e d me to her p a r t y . " I n te rv i ewer 115 "And how long a f t e r you stopped l i v i n g wi th your c h i l d r e n d i d t h i s i n c i d e n t o c c u r ? " Respondent " W e l l , that was December of l a s t y e a r , so j u s t over a y e a r . " I n te rv iewer "And what e x a c t l y happened that was so h e l p f u l f o r you at that t ime, spending Chr i s tmas w i th your f r i e n d ? " Respondent " I t was tha t s e c u r i t y tha t i f I d i d n ' t have my k i d s , I s t i l l had her at a t ime when I needed h e r . R e a l i z i n g tha t I had her and her suppor t . Yeah, her support was what I needed. J u s t knowing she was there f o r me." I n te rv iewer "And what was i t about be ing w i th her at Chr i s tmas that was so h e l p f u l fo r you?" Respondent "That I needed her and tha t she o b v i o u s l y c a r e d about me. That h e l p e d a l o t , j u s t knowing that she c a r e d was h e l p f u l to me." I n te rv i ewer "So what changed f o r you as a r e s u l t of be ing w i th her that Chr i s tmas ? " 116 Respondent "I t h ink i t was f u r t h e r s t r e n g t h e n i n g that I wasn ' t go ing to f a l l apa r t wi thout the c h i l d r e n . And, wh i le I l o v e d Chr i s tmas and the t r a d i t i o n s , and be ing w i th my k i d s , but what you do i s the best you can do and that your whole l i f e c a n ' t r e v o l v e around your k i d s . I s t i l l have my f r i e n d s and I can count on them. That was an important r e a l i z a t i o n . " I n te rv i ewer "And who would you i d e n t i f y as be ing i n v o l v e d in t h i s i n c i d e n t ? " Respondent "My f r i e n d . " Fo l l ow-Up Ques t ions 1. What were the g e n e r a l c i r cums tances l e a d i n g up to the  i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g ? T a l k i n g w i th a f r i e n d about how sad she, the p a r t i c i p a n t f e l t about not be ing ab le to spend Chr i s tmas wi th her c h i l d r e n and how that was always a mean ing fu l and important t r a d i t i o n f o r h e r . 2. How long a f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n d i d the i n c i d e n t  occur? J u s t over a y e a r . 3. What happened that was h e l p f u l ? Be ing i n v i t e d to a c l o s e f r i e n d ' s Chr i s tmas p a r t y a t a t ime when 1 17 she, the p a r t i c i p a n t wanted to spend Chr i s tmas w i th her c h i l d r e n . Her f r i e n d was very s u p p o r t i v e to her by i n v i t i n g her to the Chr i s tmas p a r t y . 4. What was i t about the i n c i d e n t tha t was h e l p f u l ? (Source) F e e l i n g l o ved by her f r i e n d and r e a l i z i n g tha t t h i s f r i e n d was l i k e another type of f a m i l y f o r h e r . 5. What changed as a r e s u l t of the i n c i d e n t ? R e a l i z i n g tha t she wasn ' t a lone and wasn ' t go ing to f a l l apa r t wi thout her c h i l d r e n at Chr i s tmas t ime because she had a c l o s e and c a r i n g f r i e n d to be w i th at tha t t ime. 6. Who i s i d e n t i f i e d as the person r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t  o c c u r r i n g ? (Agent) Her f r i e n d . Summary of the i n c i d e n t Her f r i e n d was s u p p o r t i v e d u r i n g a t ime of need. 118 F u l l - l e n g t h H i n d e r i n g I nc iden t and I t s S i m p l i f i e d Counterpar t T r a n s c r i p t i o n #3 Respondent "Another one was t a l k i n g w i th a f r i e n d of mine who i s a f e m i n i s t and she and I were t a l k i n g about k id s and she s a i d to me, ' W e l l , you d o n ' t l i k e c h i l d r e n do you? ' And I was r e a l l y hur t t h a t her assumption was that I d i d n ' t l i k e c h i l d r e n and she knows I have c h i l d r e n that d o n ' t l i v e w i th me because s h e ' s met them. And that s h e ' d assume tha t I d i d n ' t l i k e c h i l d r e n . That r e a l l y bothered me. And she was even uncomfor tab le t a l k i n g to me about her wanting a c h i l d . I mean, I enjoyed c h i l d r e n and a l l t h a t . I n te rv iewer "So what were the genera l c i r cums tances l e a d i n g up to tha t i n c i d e n t ? " Respondent " W e l l , we were working toge ther and became f r i e n d s and she i n v i t e d me over f o r tea and we were t a l k i n g about the p ro spec t of her hav ing a baby. " I n te rv iewer "And how long a f t e r you separa ted from your k ids d i d tha t i n c i d e n t o c c u r ? " Respondent 119 "About th ree and o n e - h a l f y e a r s . J u s t l a s t s p r i n g . " I n te r v i ewer "And e x a c t l y what happened tha t was so d i f f i c u l t f o r you when she made that assumpt ion? " Respondent "I guess what was hard f o r me was that she d i d n ' t under s tand . She d i d n ' t e x p e r i e n c e i t h e r s e l f and p robab l y never would because s h e ' s very much the e a r t h mother type and r e a l l y t h i n k s tha t women are mother ly i n a l l ways. So i t was so f a r from her c o n c e p t i o n to have a c h i l d and not want to l i v e w i th tha t c h i l d a lways . I was upset by tha t because she c a l l s h e r s e l f a f e m i n i s t and to me feminism i s about c h o i c e and I f e l t , in a sense, she was deny ing me that c h o i c e . That i f I gave up my c h i l d r e n , I must not l i k e c h i l d r e n . I n te r v i ewer "So what happened that was so d i f f i c u l t f o r you w a s . . . " Respondent " J u s t t ha t assumption that I d i d n ' t l i k e c h i l d r e n . I wasn ' t suppor ted in my d e c i s i o n . In f a c t , i t was more l i k e her judg ing me f o r making that d e c i s i o n . My d e c i s i o n wasn ' t v a l u e d . And even among f e m i n i s t s , I wasn ' t v a l u e d . My c h o i c e was not be ing r e c o g n i z e d as a l e g i t i m a t e c h o i c e . " 1 20 I n te rv iewer "So you f e l t her judgment about your d e c i s i o n ? " Respondent " Y e a h . " I n te rv iewer "And what was i t about tha t i n c i d e n t tha t h i n d e r e d your ad jus tment? " Respondent "The need to e x p l a i n tha t I d i d l o ve my k i d s . But i t was h a r d . That was on my mind a l o t . She was someone I l i k e d a l o t , and I f e l t that I had to defend my c h o i c e to h e r . I f e l t she was judg ing me f a l s e l y . She d i d n ' t know i f I l i k e d c h i l d r e n or no t , but she j u s t made that a s sumpt ion. T h a t ' s what was so h a r d , she made that assumpt ion without a sk ing me how I f e l t about i t . " I n te rv iewer "So what changed f o r you as a r e s u l t of t h i s i n c i d e n t ? " Respondent " A c t u a l l y , I became much l e s s t r u s t i n g of p e o p l e . And a l s o a very power fu l t h i n g came out of t h a t . A r e c o g n i t i o n that I needed to f i n d women who had done the same t h i n g . That i f I was f e e l i n g judged and that i f I wasn ' t f e e l i n g v a l i d a t e d , i t ' s because I d i d n ' t know anyone e l s e who had done i t and that I 121 s h o u l d n ' t be l o o k i n g f o r v a l i d a t i o n from peop le who had never done i t and p robab ly never wou ld . " I n te r v i ewer "So i n that i n c i d e n t , what changed f o r you? How were th i ng s d i f f e r e n t ? " Respondent "The d i sappo in tment that a f r i e n d wasn ' t , w e l l , I f e l t tha t she wasn ' t s u p p o r t i v e which was a d i s appo in tment . A b i g d i s a p p o i n t m e n t . " I n te r v i ewer "So i t was the unmet s u p p o r t i v e of your w a s n ' t ? " Respondent "Yeah, and in a sense, I see i t i n p o l i t i c a l terms. A woman shou ld be a b l e to make that c h o i c e . I mean, what k ind of movement i s t h i s when we s t i l l have t h i s t r a d i t i o n a l n o t i o n about women? I n te rv i ewer "That i s d i f f i c u l t because t r a d i t i o n a l motherhood seems to be so eng ra ined i n t o a l l of u s . " Respondent e x p e c t a t i o n tha t you thought s h e ' d be c h o i c e and the d i sappo intment because she 1 22 "Yeah, we've sure i n t e r n a l i z e d i t . I t ' s o u r s . We d o n ' t need anyone e l s e out there to t e l l u s . " I n te rv i ewer "Okay, so the person i n v o l v e d in t h i s i n c i d e n t would be your f r i e n d . " Respondent " Y e a h . " Fo l l ow-Up Ques t ions 1. What were the g e n e r a l c i r cums tance s l e a d i n g up to the  i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g ? Having tea w i th a f r i e n d and t a l k i n g wi th her about motherhood. 2. How long a f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n d i d the i n c i d e n t  occur? Three and o n e - h a l f y e a r s . 3. What happened that was h i n d e r i n g ? Her d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n was not r e c o g n i z e d as a v a l i d c h o i c e . 4. What was i t about the i n c i d e n t tha t was h i n d e r i n g ? (Source) D i sappo intment that her f r i e n d was judgmental and unsuppor t i ve of her d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n . 5. What changed as a r e s u l t of the i n c i d e n t ? 123 A r e c o g n i t i o n tha t she needed to f i n d o ther women in her s i t u a t i o n , f o r support and v a l i d a t i o n . 6. Who i s i d e n t i f i e d as the person r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t  o c c u r r i n g ? (Agent) Her f r i e n d . Summary of the i n c i d e n t R e c e i v i n g nega t i ve judgment from her f r i e n d f o r her d e c i s i o n to l i v e apar t from her c h i l d r e n . 124 F u l l - l e n g t h H i n d e r i n g I n c i den t and I t s S i m p l i f i e d Counterpar t  T r a n s c r i p t i o n #4 Respondent " W e l l , I remember one t ime my daughter g rabb ing onto my l e g when I was l e a v i n g . She was about s i x yea r s o l d and s a y i n g , 'Mommy, d o n ' t go . ' And tha t k ind of s t u f f haunts you f o r weeks a f t e r w a r d s . You keeping t h i n k i n g , 'What have I done? ' I n te rv iewer "So what were the g e n e r a l c i r cums tance s l e a d i n g up to tha t inc i d e n t ? " Respondent "I spent the week-end wi th the k i d s and when I dropped them o f f , hav ing my daughter grab my l e g , begging me not to go. " I n te rv iewer "So, w i th that p a r t i c u l a r i n c i d e n t , how long a f t e r you s topped l i v i n g wi th your k i d s d i d i t o c c u r ? " Respondent "I guess i t was about four months a f t e r . " I n te rv i ewer "And what e x a c t l y happened f o r you tha t was so d i f f i c u l t at tha t t ime? " 125 Respondent " P e e l i n g her f i n g e r s away from my l e g . Oh God, and hav ing to walk down the s t r e e t , l i s t e n i n g to her c r y i n g at the door . J u s t hav ing to tu rn my back on her and hav ing to walk away. That was r e a l l y h a r d . " I n te r v i ewer "And what was i t about wa lk ing away wh i le she was c r y i n g at the door tha t was so hard f o r you?" Respondent "Because I d i d n ' t want to hur t h e r . But do ing what I had to do was h u r t i n g her and I hated every minute of i t . Walk ing away from h e r , t u r n i n g my back on h e r . I s t i l l f e e l g u i l t y when I t h i n k about t h a t . " I n te rv i ewer "And what changed f o r you as a r e s u l t of t h i s i n c i d e n t in terms of your ad jus tment? " Respondent " W e l l , I t h i nk i t h i nde red my adjustment because I heard i t and I c o u l d see i t f o r so long a f t e r w a r d s . I c o u l d p i c t u r e her i n my mind, c l i n g i n g onto my l e g , c r y i n g f o r me not to go. God, i t was hard to l eave h e r . I f e l t g u i l t y f o r a long t ime a f t e r t h a t . What changed f o r me? I j u s t f e l t very very g u i l t y every t ime I 'd t h ink of her c r y i n g f o r me not to go . " 126 I n te rv i ewer "And the peop le i n v o l v e d ? " Respondent " B a s i c a l l y , my daughter . Fo l l ow-Up Ques t ions 1. What were the g e n e r a l c i r cums tance s l e a d i n g up to the  i n c i d e n t o c c u r r i n g ? Dropping the c h i l d r e n o f f at t h e i r dad ' s a f t e r they spent the week-end w i th h e r . 2. How long a f t e r s e p a r a t i n g from the c h i l d r e n d i d the i n c i d e n t  occur? Four months. 3. What happened that was h i n d e r i n g ? Walk ing away from her s i x year o l d daughter wh i le her daughter c l ung onto her l e g and c r i e d f o r her not to go. 4. What was i t about the i n c i d e n t tha t was h i n d e r i n g ? (Source) H u r t i n g her daughter by wa lk ing away from h e r . 5. What changed as a r e s u l t of the i n c i d e n t ? f e e l i n g g u i l t y . 6. Who i s i d e n t i f i e d as the person r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the i n c i d e n t  o c c u r r i n g ? (Agent) Her daughter . 127 Summary of the i n c i d e n t She f e l t g u i l t y f o r w a l k i n g out on her daughter when her daughter was c r y i n g f o r her not t o go. 128 Appendix G Demographic I n fo rmat ion PARTICIPANT AGE INCOME POST SECONDARY EDUCATION NUMBER OF CHILDREN 37 $20,000 2 Years 38 7,000 0 Years 43 10,000 6 Years 37 10,200 3 Years 32 12, 100 4 Years 40 14,000 4 Years 2 3 36 12,000 6 Years 8 9 10 1 1 12 1 3 1 4 44 21,600 6 Years 41 27,000 0 Years 49 40,000 1 Year 33 12,000 3 Years 35 12,000 4 Years 39 15,600 0 Years 36 8,400 0 Years 129 PARTICIPANT AGE INCOME POST SECONDARY NUMBER OF EDUCATION CHILDREN 15 44 10,000 6 Years 16 38 39,000 1 Year 17 41 32,000 2 Years 1 30 PARTICIPANT AGES OF ATTENDING EMPLOYED COUNSELLING CHILDREN SCHOOL 1 11, 13 No F u l l - t i m e No 2 15 Yes No Yes 3 8, 11, 16, 18 Yes P a r t - t i m e No 4 16 No No Yes 5 9, 12 Yes F u l l - t i m e No 6 13, 17, 19 No F u l l - t i m e No 7 13, 18 Yes P a r t - t i m e No 8 16, 17, 19 No F u l l - t i m e No 9 16, 17 No F u l l - t i m e No 10 19, 20 No F u l l - t i m e No 11 13 No F u l l - t i m e Yes 12 13 No P a r t - t i m e Yes 13 6, 9, 15, 21 Yes F u l l - t i m e Yes 14 14, 15 No P a r t - t i m e Yes 15 13, 18 No F u l l - t i m e No 16 15, 19 Yes P a r t - t i m e No 17 15 No F u l l - t i m e No 131 RESPONDENT COUNSELLING SEPARATION FROM SEPARATION FROM IN PAST EX-HUSBAND CHILDREN 7 8 9 10 1 1 1 2 1 3 14 1 5 1 6 1 7 Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 3 Years 13 Years 4 Years 11 Years 7 Years 10 Years 7 Years 11 Years 5 Years 8 Years 9 Years 10 Years 2 Years 6 Years 5 Years 12 Years 12 Years 3 Years 6 Years 4 Years 9 Years 4 Years 10 Years 4 Years 1 Year 1 Year 8 Years 9 Years 10 Years 2 Years 6 Years 5 Years 2 Years 12 Years Appendix H Summary of Demographic In format ion Median age of the p a r t i c i p a n t s = 38 Years Median annual income = $12,100 Median number of year s of post secondary educa t i on Median number of c h i l d r e n each = 2 Median age of the c h i l d r e n = 15 Years Median number of years s i n ce s e p a r a t i n g from ex-husband = 7 Median number of year s s i n ce s e p a r a t i n g from c h i l d r e n = 5 Number of s tudents = 6 (35.3%) Number working f u l l - t i m e = 10 (58.8%) Number working p a r t - t i m e = 5 (29.4%) Number in c o u n s e l l i n g c u r r e n t l y or i n past = 15 (88 Focus of c o u n s e l l i n g d e a l i n g w i th adjustment to l i v i n g apar t from the c h i l d r e n = 8/15 (53.3%) Number r e - m a r r i e d = 2 (11.8%) Number l i v i n g w i th someone = 2 (11.8%) 1 33 Appendix I Rater R e l i a b i l i t y Scores f o r Supero rd ina te and Subord ina te C a t e g o r i e s Supe ro rd ina te C a t e g o r i e s Subord ina te C a t e g o r i e s Rater Number Percentage Rater Number Percentage B 94.1 94. 1 92.2 100.0 B 88.7 90.6 93.2 95. 1 

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