The Investigation and Comparison of Experience of Divorce in Divorced Men and Women (Meanings, Contexts, Outcomes, and Adjustment after Divorce)

Aida Abolhassni, Taghi Pourebrahim, Abolghasem Khoshkonesh


The aim of this qualitative study is to investigate the experience of divorced in men and women with respect to implications, backgrounds, consequences and compatibility of divorce and compares their experiences in this regard. To this end, the phenomenology method of qualitative research has been adopted in this study. 25 persons (13 females and 12 males) were selected using purposive sampling based on standard sampling strategy until data saturation was achieved. Semi-structured interviews were used to collect data. To analyze the data derived from phenomenological interviews, thematic analysis was employed. The research findings were divided into four general categories of divorce implications, backgrounds for divorce, divorce consequences and divorce adaptation. Each of these categories was further divided into sub-themes. In the category of divorce implications, two themes of perceived implications of divorce and semantic dimensions of divorce were discussed. The sub theme related to the perceived implications of divorce was additionally divided into three sub scales of divorce salvation, divorce as the last resort and negative implication of divorce. The sub-theme of semantic dimensions of divorce was also divided into three sub scales related to social, personal and sexual dimensions of divorce. In this study, the emphasis has been on the backgrounds for divorce rather than causes of divorce. The findings related to the backgrounds for divorce include 9 sub-themes which were divided into four general themes associated with large, medium, small and interactive dimensions. The consequences of divorce consisted of 17 sub-themes which were divided into three general subjects associated with economic, sociocultural and personal dimensions. Compatibility was also composed of 9 sub-themes divided into three general themes related to personal, domestic, socioeconomic and the presence of children. As for the disparity between men and women experience, the results showed that divorce experience was affected by the gender of participants in cultural and social settings. As for the implications and grounds for divorce, men and women had identical experiences, but there they were different in term of how they had gained those experiences. This difference was especially significant with respect to divorce consequences and compatibility. For men, divorce consequences are more notable with respect to emotional and personal dimension but for women, the social and cultural dimension is highlighted. Moreover, divorce tends to be considered as an internal matter for men and an external matter for women. Finally, it is concluded that this structure demonstrates the interactive nature of divorce dimensions, divorce, the reciprocity of divorce backgrounds, and structural relationship between various aspects of divorce. Thus, any preventive programs, counseling and intervention in divorce crisis should take such structural, complex and multidimensional relationships into consideration.

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International Journal of Social Science Studies   ISSN 2324-8033 (Print)   ISSN 2324-8041 (Online)

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