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of the Faithful

Broken Families

Statistics page

"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families..." Psalm 68:5-6

Who is breaking up

"Half of all children [in the U.S.] will witness the breakup of a parent's marriage. Of these, close to half will also see the breakup of a parent's second marriage."1

FathersChristians are more likely than non-Christians to experience divorce. (Among Christians, 27% report they've gone through a divorce; only 24% of non-Christians report that they have.)2

Among people attending mainline Protestant churches, one in four (25%) has gone through a divorce; twenty-nine percent of Baptists have gone through a divorce; and roughly one out of every three (34%) non-denominational Protestant church members have gone through a divorce.3

Between 1950 and 1980, the number of children involved in divorces and annulments rose 175 percent.4 From 1970 to 1994, the number of divorced adults quadrupled, making "divorced persons" the fastest-growing marital status category in the United States.5 Forty percent of children growing up in America today are being raised without their fathers6 and The number of single fathers in America has tripled since 19807.

The decay of the family

Studies in the early 1980s showed that children in repeat divorces earned lower grades and their peers rated them as less pleasant to be around.8 Teenagers in single-parent families and in blended families (stepfamilies) are three times more likely to need psychological help within a given year.9

"Compared to children from homes disrupted by death, children from divorced homes have more psychological problems."10 Children of divorce are four times more likely to report problems with peers and friends than are children whose parents have kept their marriages intact.11 People who come from broken homes are almost twice as likely to attempt suicide than those who do not come from broken homes.12

Other effects on the family

GirlChildren of divorce are about two to three times more likely to live grow up with a parent who struggles with alcoholism than children from an intact marriage.13 Children of divorced parents are roughly two times more likely to drop out of high school than their peers who benefit from living with parents who did not divorce.14Girls from a broken family are twice as likely to become teen mothers than girls living with biological parents who have not divorced.15  

Violence from broken homes

"A child living in a female-headed home is 10 times more likely to be beaten or murdered."16

Seventy percent of long-term prison inmates grew up in broken homes.17

Of the juvenile criminals who are a threat to the public, three-fourths came from broken homes.18 Fully 75 percent of those charged with homicide had parents who were either divorced or had never been married at all; that number rises to 82 percent of those charged with nonviolent larceny offenses.19
A survey of 108 rapists undertaken by Raymond A. Knight and Robert A. Prentky revealed the 60 percent came from female-headed homes,. 70 percent of those describable as 'violent' came from female-headed homes. 80 percent of those motivated by 'displaced anger' came from female-headed (single-parent) homes.20

The good of not breaking up

Children living with both biological parents are 20- to 35-percent more physically healthy than children from broken homes.21


Sheldon Richman wrote, “The future of education, and of America as a free society, depends on the liberation of the American family from the grip of the public school,” In truth it is the future of the family which is at stake.



School to fool
Are schools and educational institutions used as a social tool?


“To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies… It systematically undermines the solidarity of the family…” George Orwell







1  Furstenberg, Peterson, Nord, and Zill, "Life Course," 656ff. Cited on page76 of The Abolition of Marriage, by Maggie Gallagher

2 Press Release: "Christians Are More Likely to Experience Divorce Than Are Non-Christians." Released by the Barna Research Group, 12/21/99, www.barna.org/cgi-bin/MainTrends.asp

3 Barna Research Group, 12/21/99, www.barna.org/cgi-bin/MainTrends.asp

4 Brian Willats, Breaking Up is Easy To Do, available from Michigan Family Forum, citing Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1993

5 Arlene Saluter, Marital Status and Living Arrangements: March 1994 , U.S.. Bureau of the Census, March 1996; series P20-484, p, vi.

6 Wade Horn and Andrew Bush, "Fathers, Marriage, and Welfare Reform," Hudson Institute Executive Briefing, 1997, Hudson Institute, Herman Kahn Center, 5395 Emerson Way, Indianapolis, IN 46226, (317) 545-1000. Quoted and condensed from National Center for Policy Analysis, Policy Digest, Monday, July 28, 1997 -- "Making Ideas Change the World"

7 From the Census Bureau web page: http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/hh-fam.html

8 Andrew J. Cherlin, Marriage, Divorce, Remarriage (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1981), page 71. Cited on page 77 of The Abolition of Marriage, by Maggie Gallagher

9 Peter Hill, "Recent Advances in Selected Aspects of Adolescent Development," Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 34, no. 1 (1993): 69-99. Cited on page 72 of The Abolition of Marriage, by Maggie Gallagher

10 Robert E. Emery, Marriage, Divorce, and Children's Adjustment (Newbury Park, Calif.: Sage Publications, 1988), pages 57 and 67. Cited on page 60 of The Abolition of Marriage, by Maggie Gallagher

11 Dorothy Tysse and Margaret Crosbie-Burnett, "Moral Dilemmas of Early Adolescents of Divorced and Intact Families: A Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis," Journal of Early Adolescence 13, no. 2 (May 1993): 168-182`

12 Carmen Noevi Velez and Patricia Cohen, "Suicidal Behavior and Ideation in a Community Sample of Children: Maternal and Youth Reports," Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 273 [1988]: 349-356

13 Lee Robins and Darrel Regier, Psychiatric Disorders in America: The Epidemiologic Catchment Area Study (New York: Free Press, 1991), p. 103

14 Sara McLanahan and Gary Sandefur, Growing Up With a Single Parent: What Hurts, What Helps , (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1994), p. 41

15 Ibid, pg. 53

16 The Legal Beagle, July, 1984. Cited in Amneus, The Garbage Generation, page 113

17 Sara McLanahan and Gary Sandefur, Growing Up With a Single Parent: What Hurts, What Helps , (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1994), p. 41

18 Ramsey Clark, Crime in America: Observations on Its Nature, Causes, Prevention and Control (New York: Pocket Books, 1970), p.39. Cited in Amneus, The Garbage Generation.

19 Dewey G. Cornell, et al., "Characteristics of Adolescents Charged With Homicide: Review of 72 Cases," Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 5, No. 1 [1987], 11-23; epitomized in The Family in America: New Research, March, 1988. Cited in Amneus, The Garbage Generation, page 216

20 "No-Fault Divorce: Proposed Solutions to a National Tragedy," 1993 Journal of Legal Studies 2, 19, citing R. Knight and R. Prentky, The Developmental Antecedents and Adult Adaptations of Rapist Subtypes, 14 CRIMINAL JUSTICE AND BEHAVIOR 403-426 (1987).

21 Deborah A. Dawson, "Family Structure and Children's Health and Well-being: Data from the National Health Interview Survey on Child Health," Journal of Marriage and the Family, 53, pp. 573-579


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