Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
College of Education and Human Services
Family and Child Studies
Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair
Brad van Eeden-Moorefield
Adult children of divorced parents, Communication--Psychological aspects, Interpersonal communication
Grounded in the intergenerational transmission of divorce theory, this qualitative phenomenological study explored how lived experiences of relational communication among female Adult Children of Divorce (ACOD) might reflect those of their parents who divorced during the adult child’s adolescence years. Ten in-depth Skype interviews were conducted with female ACOD at a large northeastern university. All participants shared negative communication behaviors that they perceived their parents used before the divorce. They described their experiences as “ugly and uncomfortable.” The findings suggested that ACOD’s exposure to conflict influenced the communication behaviors of their romantic relationships. Specifically, ACOD have had limited positive communication behaviors that could serve as models for their own romantic relationships. These findings support the need for research education programs aimed at adolescents to teach healthy communication skills at the start of their romantic relationship experiences.
Nacer, Carly A., ""It was Just Ugly and Uncomfortable" : A Phenomenological Study of Intergenerational Transmission Among Adult Children of Divorce" (2017). Theses, Dissertations and Culminating Projects. 43.