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Lorenz, Frederick O.; Simons, Ronald L.; Conger, Rand D.; Elder, Glen H., Jr.; Johnson, Christine; & Chao, Wei (1997). Married and Recently Divorced Mothers' Stressful Events and Distress: Tracing Change across Time. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 59(1), 219-232.


We examined the relationship between divorce and psychological distress in adult women by combining data from two studies, one of divorced mothers with adolescent children (n = 188) and another of married mothers (n = 306). The data were modeled using latent growth curves to chart change over time. Change in depressive symptoms paralleled changes in stressful events. For divorced mothers, stressful events and depressive symptoms increased significantly soon after the divorce and then diminished over the next 3 years, although not to the same levels reported by married women. The data were consistent with a proposed model that incorporated aspects of both the social causation and the selection perspectives.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Journal of Marriage and the Family


Lorenz, Frederick O.
Simons, Ronald L.
Conger, Rand D.
Elder, Glen H., Jr.
Johnson, Christine
Chao, Wei