Effect of Broken Home on Children
Objectives of the Study
The general objective of the study is to investigate the socio-cultural and behavioral contexts of broken home the people of Nigeria. The specific objectives of the study include.
- Find out the perceived causes of broken homes among the people,
- Find out the perception and attitude of those who are victim of broken home.
- Investigate the problems and coping mechanism among the people who are affected as well as the feeling of the members of the society toward it and how these influence treatment or solution.
- To make policy recommendation based on study finding on the management of broken home experience.
Literature will be reviewed under the following sub-headings.
Concept of Home
Home as shelter connotes the material form of home, in terms of a physical structure which affords protection to oneself, and which appears to others as at least a roof over one’s head. Home as hearth connotes the warmth and cosiness which home provides to the body, causing one to relax in comfort and ensuring a welcoming and ‘homely’ atmosphere for others. Home as heart is very similar, but in this case the emphasis is on emotional rather than physiological security and health, with associated images of a happy home and a stable home, based on relations of mutual affection and support (Somerville 2015). For this study, home connotes a group of people living in the under the same shelter. The group of people are usually united by blood relationship. It is the blood tie that binds people in a home that leads to their being described as a family.
The family which is the child’s first place of settlement plays a vital role in the socialization process. Agbedanu (2012) posited that whatever behaviour put up by members of the family is what the child copies. For example, in a family where there is love, unity and peace, the child also grows up with these characteristics. Thus, the family background should be an environment in which children have the opportunity to succeed and be happy. Giddens and Sutton (2012,p.384) define family ‘a group of persons directly linked by kin connections, the adult members of which assume responsibility for caring for children’ and ‘kin’ are those linked by marriage or blood relationships. The definition of Giddens and Sutton is of particular importance to this study because it talks of adult taking care of the children. This care may not be fully available for students in broken homes.
Students from broken homes are likely to receive less parental encouragement and attention with respect to educational activities than students who live with both biological parents. Students from broken homes often have lower educational expectations, less monitoring of school work and less supervision than students from intact homes (Astone & Mclanahan, 1991)..
Concept of Broken Homes
Broken home is sometimes viewed as shattered home due to its deleterious effects on the family, especially the children from such a family. Broken home can also be viewed as divided home. The concept of broken home is defined by Hurlock (1978 as cited in Agbedanu, 2012) as a home where one of the parents is dead, separation of parents, divorce or a vocation that necessitates long or frequent absence by one or both parents. The term broken home is sometimes referred to a home with unfavourable background (Kwaku 1990). A home led by people other than both child’s parents. Kwaku (1990) posited that “broken home” is perceived by social welfare societies as family where one of the parents is not present or there is /a serious family problem. In order to buttress the effects broken home has on the family, Agbedanu (2012) asserted that the problem of broken homes is that, it is not just the parents that separate, it is the children who get separated from both parents. Furthermore, Kasoma (2012) maintained that the home environment is a strong predictor of the future behaviour of children and an impact of broken homes touches almost every aspect of life.
There are different and complex causes and reasons for broken homes. These may involve; the death of either of the parents, separation of the parents or divorce. However, in the recent years, divorce has been found to be the major cause of broken homes. Child Trends (2005) stated that Divorce or dissolution of marriage is a judicially administered process that legally terminates a marriage that is considered as no longer viable by one or both of the spouses and permits both of them to remarry. It entails cancelling the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage and dissolving the bonds of matrimony between two persons. A divorce does not declare a marriage null and void, as in an annulment, but divorce cancels the marital status of the parties, thus, allowing each to marry another person. The legal process for divorce according to Amato (2002) may involve issues of spousal support, child custody, child support, distribution of property and division of debt, these matters are usually only ancillary or consequential to the dissolution of marriage.
Several factors have also been attributed to the causes of divorce, each of them is specific to that particular couple’s marital relationship, their individual experiences and personal problems. None of them may seem common to the people going through a divorce. Kasoma (2012) observed that globally, the following factors have been found to be responsible for divorce; abandonment, alcohol addiction, physical abuse, emotional abuse, personal differences or “irreconcilable differences “financial problems, interferences from parents or in-laws, lack of maturity, sexual incompatibility, religious conversion or religious beliefs, cultural and life style differences, criminal behaviour and incarceration for crime.
In this chapter the procedure that was adopted for the study are presented under the following subheadings namely; design of the study, area of the study, population of the study, sample and sampling technique, instrument for data collection, validation of the instrument, reliability of the instrument, method of data collection and method of data analysis.
Design of the Study
The study was employed of Ex post facto design or causal comparative design According to Eze (2005), ex post facto design is a systematic empirical inquiring in which the researcher does not have direct control on the independent variables because they are inherently not manipulated. Thus, the variable has already occurred and the researcher will start with the observation of a dependent variable. The research actually will study the independent variable (broken home) in respect to possible influence on the dependent variable (academic performance).
The justification for using this design in this study is because the researcher wants to find out the influence of broken homes on the academic performance of the students.
Population of Study
The population of this study consisted of all the junior 7,607 secondary school III students in Egor Local government area.
This chapter deals with the presentation of the results of the analysis of data collected. The results from both records of students academic achievement records and survey is hereby presented based on the research questions thus:
SUMMARY OF THE STUDY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
Summary of the Study
This study investigated the influence of broken homes on the Children from broken homes within Egor Local government area of Edo state. The study was guided by five research questions. Ex-post facto and design was adopted for the study. The sample size for the study comprised of 450 secondary school students from broken homes. Two different instruments were used for this study. The first instrument was titled broken Home Questionnaire (BHQ) designed to collect data on students’ family structure (broken or intact) and their academic challenges Egor Local government areawhile the second was students academic performance checklist. The data were analysed using mean standard deviation. The major findings of the study revealed that secondary school students from broken homes within face education challenges like lack of sufficient text books, inability to meet education related financial obligations, poor academic performance and lack of concentration while in school. Also, result showed that secondary school students from broken homes within Egor Local government area face emotional challenges like emotional stress, despair, inferiority complex, feeling insecure and unhappiness. It was also found that secondary school students from broken homes within Egor Local government area face social challenges like neglect, prone to sickness due to malnutrition, discrimination against by peers and intimidation. Result also showed no significant statistical difference in the mean academic achievement scores of secondary school students from broken homes based on gender and no significant statistical difference in the mean academic achievement scores of secondary school students from broken homes based on location.
Based on the result of this study, the following conclusions are drawn
* Children from broken homes within Egor Local government area are faced with challenges in their academic pursuit, ranging from lack of learning materials, to psychological trauma, to parental neglect among others.
* Children from broken homes within Egor Local government area face social challenges like neglect, prone to sickness due to malnutrition, discrimination against by peers and intimidation.
* Children from broken homes within Egor Local government area face emotional challenges like emotional stress, despair, inferiority complex, feeling insecure and unhappiness.
* Children from broken homes in Egor Local government area are less likely to achieve academic success than their counterpart from intact homes.
Based on the findings of this study and the educational implications, the following recommendations are made.
- State ministry of education should make arrangement for the provision of special packages for secondary school students from broken homes with a view to improving their academic achievement.
- School administrators and curriculum planners should adopt the measures found to in this study as ways of improving academic achievement among Children in Egor Local government area.
- School teachers should pay special attention to the challenges faced by Children from broken homes with the aim of assisting them over come such problems.
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