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July 5, 2018 – Better relationships with each parent = better outcomes

In sum, neither family income nor parental conflict can account for JPC children having better outcomes than SPC children. This might largely be explained by the fact that the quality of children’s relationships with each parent often effects how well children fare in JPC or in SPC (for a review of these studies, see Mahrer, O’Hara, Sandler, & Wolchik, 2018, in press). Further analyses of the JPC and SPC studies show that children’s outcomes are effected not only by the quality of their relationships with their parents, but by the child’s gender (Nielsen, 2018, in press). In other words, the reason why JPC children have better outcomes independent of family income and parental conflict may be because they have better relationships with each parent, which, in turn, may override the importance of family income and the amount of conflict or cooperation between the parents.

Linda Nielsen (2018): Joint versus sole physical custody: Outcomes for children independent of family income or parental conflict, Journal of Child Custody, DOI: 10.1080/15379418.2017.1422414, at page 15.

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