Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Marital conflict in child custody disputes and the corresponding psychological variables
by Peters, Katie Marie, Psy.D., Immaculata University, 2013, 119; 3576436
Abstract (Summary)

Divorce can significantly and negatively impact a child's well-being (Emery, Otto, & O'Donohue, 2005; Kelly, 2000; Kushner, 2009). Although the majority of divorce disputes are settled with minimal court involvement, approximately 10% of divorcing couples require child custody evaluations. Typically, parents undergoing child custody evaluations are labeled "high-conflict," but some anecdotal evidence suggests that one parent may be driving the conflict while the other is reluctantly dragged into battle (Friedman, 2004; Kelly, 2003). Custody litigants (N = 137; 69 males, 68 females) were classified into categories of high- and low-conflict based on the presence or absence of certain variables, using archived data from a forensic psychology practice, and a rating system developed for the purposes of this study. Groups were then compared separately on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 (MMPI-2) and the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III (MCMI-III), using three different methods of high- and low- conflict group distribution. Custody litigants tended to demonstrate profiles that were not elevated on clinical scales. Multiple t-tests did not reveal significant differences between high-conflict and low-conflict parents on MMPI-2 and MCMI-III Clinical scales. However, correlational analysis of MMPI-2 scales and Conflict Scores did show significance for a few of the scales (Scales F, 3, 6, and 8), whereas only one MCMI- III scale (Scale 7) was significant. Results were discussed in relation to a profile of MMPI-2 and MCMI-III respondents and conflict valence.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Yalof, Jed
Commitee: McGrath, Marie, Moon, Edward
School: Immaculata University
Department: Clinical Psychology Dept.
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-B 75/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Social work, Clinical psychology, Personality psychology
Keywords: Child custody evaluation, High-conflict, Interparental conflict, Personality assessment
Publication Number: 3576436
ISBN: 978-1-303-56371-3
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