Divorce and belief in internal versus external control of one’s life: Data from a national probability sample

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

A major tradition in recent studies of divorce has proposed that the divorce experience often leads to enhanced personal development, including a greater sense of personal control over one’s life. The present study examined a correlate of this divorce-as-development position, namely, that divorced persons when compared with married persons should have a stronger belief in personal control over life events. Using locus of control personality scores from a national probability sample of white adults, with education and income controlled, this study found that divorced persons were on the average significantly more internal than married persons. Similar comparisons between the divorced and other marital status groups were interpreted as supporting the divorce-as-development position. It was observed, however, that the’ present cross-sectional data cannot unravel the issue of causal direction, i.e., are internals more likely to become divorced or is greater internality a byproduct of the divorce experience?

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-401
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Divorce
Volume3
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 20 1980

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Divorce and belief in internal versus external control of one’s life: Data from a national probability sample'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this