This study examines whether fear of abandonment mediates the prospective relations between divorce stressors and mother-child relationship quality and adjustment problems of children of divorce. Participants were 216 children, ages 8-12, and their primary residential mothers. Children reported on divorce stressors and fear of abandonment; mothers and children reported on mother-child relationship quality and internalizing and externalizing problems. Structural equation models indicated that Time 1 fear of abandonment mediated the relation between Time 1 divorce stressors and Time 2 internalizing and externalizing problems. Time 1 fear of abandonment also mediated the relation between Time 1 mother-child relationship quality and Time 2 internalizing and externalizing problems. Implications of these results for understanding variability in children's postdivorce adjustment problems and interventions for divorced families are discussed.
- Children's postdivorce adjustment problems
- Fear of abandonment
- Mediators of postdivorce adjustment
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health