Faculty Research and Creative Activity


He was neither a good father nor a good husband: Marital and parental roles in low-income separated families

Document Type


Publication Date

March 2017


This study aims to differentiate parental and marital roles of low-income separated parents with small children. This survey was conducted in a university school clinic of Psychology, based on qualitative methodology. Four mothers and three fathers participated in semi-structured individual interviews. Through thematic analysis, the outcomes showed the dynamic, paradoxical, and recursive reality of these families, with particularities and similarities to other socioeconomic contexts. Movements to maintain and to end the marital roles and inclusion of third parties in the marital conflict contribute to confusion between parental and marital roles. Attempts to differentiate these roles were also observed, offering strengths that should be emphasized.