Orienting Services to Separated/Divorced Fathers: A Conceptual Framework.

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Journal Name
Family Court Review
Journal Volume
51
Journal Issue
4
Page Count
15
Year Published
2013
Author (Individual)
Ashbourne, Lynda M.
Whitehead, Denise L.
Hawkins, Linda.
Resource Type
Journal Article
Resource Format
PDF
We introduce a conceptual framework incorporating the various domains that programs and services must address when considering the needs of separating and separated/divorced fathers. The three core domains are: (1) Support for reconfiguring family structure, attending to transitions associated with decoupling while maintaining a co-parenting relationship; (2) Support for parenting, including acquisition of parenting skills and knowledge about the effects of separation/divorce on children; and (3) Support for psychosocial needs, addressing issues such as mental health, substance abuse, and emotional distress. These domains are situated within the broader context of socio-cultural and legal systems and will vary across time. Keypoints for the Family Court Community Separating/separated fathers face major shifts in the configuration of family and spousal relationships, and in their roles as fathers. In addition, these significant life changes affect their personal wellbeing., A framework is presented to guide service providers (e.g., mental health, court-related, alternative dispute resolution services) and policy makers in addressing these three key domains of separated fathers' experience., Broader socio-cultural and legal contexts, and specific suggestions for implementing the framework are included., Goal is to effectively address fathers' needs in establishing positive postseparation parenting and parent-child relationships. (Author abstract)

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