Apart, but still together: Separated parents living in limbo during COVID-19
During the COVID-19 pandemic, parents face unprecedented challenges linked to social isolation, uncertainty about the future, and financial, employment, and school-related stress. Individuals who planned to separate and divorce before the pandemic now find their lives on hold. In this exploratory study of 14 women who completed an online survey of open- and closed-ended questions regarding the divorce process and parenting challenges during COVID-19, we were guided by family stress and resilience theory and a directed qualitative content analysis approach to generate a collective story of their experiences, which included four themes: (a) pile-up of tensions, challenges, and stressors, (b) living in limbo during the pandemic, (c) finding creative strategies and solutions to navigating parenting and relational dissolution, while still living together, and (d) reaching the breaking point. We conclude with implications for professionals seeking to support individuals, couples, and families during a time of unprecedented transition and uncertainty.
Journal of Marital and Family Therapy
Allen, Katherine R. and Goldberg, Abbie E., "Apart, but still together: Separated parents living in limbo during COVID-19" (2022). Psychology. 290.