Article Type: Research Article

Article Citation: Maria Marquiza A. Felisilda, and Leandro C. Torreon. (2020). EFFECTS OF BROKEN FAMILY ON PUPILS’ BEHAVIORAL DEVELOPMENT AND ACADEMIC SUCCESS. International Journal of Research -GRANTHAALAYAH, 8(10), 216-223. https://doi.org/10.29121/granthaalayah.v8.i10.2020.1526

Received Date: 11 September 2020

Accepted Date: 31 October 2020

Academic Success

Behavioral Development

Broken Family

Pupils ABSTRACT

Family is the smallest, most sensitive and important social system which is furnished and facilitated by a society as a larger social system. The family, being a powerful influence on the child’s development and important primary agent of socialization could in no doubt enhance or hinder the academic achievement of the child depending on the social climate in the family. This study seeks to evaluate the effects of broken family on behavioral development and academic success of pupils in the public elementary school. There were a total of three hundred (300) identified respondents that belonged to broken families that were selected to participate in the study. The researchers used descriptive- survey research method design to probe the pupil’s knowledge with regards to the topic, and it employed modified questionnaire (Behavioral Checklist from Psychological Associates, 2019) and direct observation in collecting data from the field. It was found out that age, sex, grade level, number of siblings, and person stays with has no direct influence to the pupils’ behavioral development, and however, academic success of the pupils depends on their behavior development. This study concluded that the attitude and behavior of the learner affects their academic success.

1.       INTRODUCTION

The home influences the child at the most earliest possible time of his life, at a time when his mind is most receptive. It provides the first impression which may last through the whole life of the child. The child often sees the parents, siblings and things in their immediate environment to be most significant and they are capable of promoting or diminishing him in self-worth and academic performance   REF _Ref55237615 \r \h [1] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600310035000000 .

The family, being a powerful influence on the child and its importance as a primary agent of socialization could in no doubt enhance or hinder the academic achievement of the child depending on the social climate in the family. Variance in psycho-social emotional fortification in the family background could be an indicator to high or low academic performance of students, bearing in mind the intervening effect of high and low socio-economic status and emotional stability of students which is a pre-requisite to academic achievement   REF _Ref55237625 \r \h [2] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600320035000000 .

When a family breaks up, it is usually difficult for everyone in the family to cope with the situation; however, children are often the worst victims of family breakup. There are powerful reasons to be alarmed about the impact of broken home on children. The stability of family creates a building block for children to progress throughout life. When parents separate, the children are left with no stability causing them to lose basic concepts of childhood and negative perception that may carry with them throughout life.

Broken families may have profound negative impact on student’s academic performance as parents play an important role in most children’s academic development. Guardians or single parents attributed to limit time that has to spend on their child’s academic work   REF _Ref55237636 \r \h [3] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600330036000000 .

The problem of broken home are universal phenomenal which affect both developed as well as the under develop country. A home is the walls of the house but the people who live on it make a home. A house only becomes a home, when if complete. A home also became a house when is not broken.

It pointed out   REF _Ref55237643 \r \h [4] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600340033000000 that the family lays the psychological, moral, and spiritual foundation in the overall development of the child. Structurally, family/homes is either broken or intact. A broken home in this context is one that is not structurally intact, as a result of divorce, separation, death of one of parent and illegitimacy. Psychological home conditions arise mainly from illegitimacy of children   REF _Ref55237649 \r \h [5] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600340039000000 , the label of adopted child, broken homes, divorce and parental deprivation. Such abnormal conditions of the home, are likely to have a detrimental effect on school performance of the child he asserts.

Life in a single parent family or broken home can be stressful for both the child and the parent. Such families are faced with challenges of inadequate financial resources (children defense find, 2004). As noted   REF _Ref55237658 \r \h [6] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600350038000000 , in order for self-control to be taught, a parent must be able to monitor their child’s behavior, recognize their inappropriate behavior as deviant, and punish them accordingly.   The problem for single parent is they may not have the enough time to monitor their child’s behavior, and they may not have the means to discipline them.   Many single-parent mothers are forced to work long hours and therefore allow their children to do a lot more without any interference.   They are also not necessarily aware of their child’s misbehavior and their performance in school.

Academic performance is seen as the knowledge attained or skills, shown in the school subject. To indicate such achievement, test scores or marks are assigned by the teachers. It is the school evaluation of the classroom work on the basis of the grades awarded. Academic performance   REF _Ref55237664 \r \h [7] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600360034000000 is of two types, the positive and negative (poor) performance. Habits, family background, perseverance, attitudes, interest all these affect academic achievement in school.   He concluded that if these variables are modified and attitude changed positively, then the level of individuals’ academic performance would improve.

The Abraham Maslow’s theory on hierarchy of needs was adopted for this study. It focuses on self-actualization of a person. Some characteristics of a self-actualized person include tolerance, welcoming uncertainty, acceptance of self and other, creativity, need for privacy, autonomy, genuine caring for others, sense of humor and directedness   REF _Ref55237675 \r \h [8] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600370035000000 . He divided human needs into five categories.   The most basic category is the physiological needs. These include food, shelter, clothing and education. When pupils lack these basic needs, they cannot grow and their concentration is on their discomfort. If pupils are hurt by conflicts in the family, they may not acquire all the needs that they need. After the basic needs, a person yearns for safety needs. This is the need to feel secure.   Pupils who witness their parents fighting all the time do not feel safe in that home. There is the fear that the parents might separate or even hurt them.

On other hand, the Attachment Theory   REF _Ref55237684 \r \h [9] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600380034000000 , child-adult relationships may be secure (close and trusting), resistant (conflicted and/or needy), avoidant (business like and emotionless or over bright) (, or disorganized (a mixture of both patterns of insecurity). The ideal pattern of attachment is conceived as a secure relationship in which a child trusts the adult caregiver to provide consistent, supportive care. Examples of secure attachments can include the following interactions: a child seeks and accepts comfort from the primary caregiver when he/she is upset or hurt, a child shows physical affection toward his/her primary caregiver, a child explores and undertakes new challenges in the company of the caregiver, a child asks for and uses help from the primary caregiver, a child checks in sometimes just visually with the primary   caregiver when uncertain, and a child follows directions and suggestions from the primary caregiver   REF _Ref55237693 \r \h [10] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003600390033000000 .

Furthermore, the Family Systems Theory is a theory   REF _Ref55237702 \r \h [11] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003700300032000000 that suggests that individuals cannot be understood in isolation from one another, but rather as a part of their family, as the family is an emotional unit. Families are systems of interconnected and interdependent individuals, none of whom can be understood in isolation from the system.

Children of broken families generally are more likely to be resource deprived   REF _Ref55237715 \r \h [12] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003700310035000000 , especially in female-headed households   REF _Ref55237723 \r \h [13] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003700320033000000 , and receive less intense and less consistent monitoring, all of which have been associated to mental development and academic success of a child   REF _Ref55237730 \r \h [14] 08D0C9EA79F9BACE118C8200AA004BA90B02000000080000000D0000005F00520065006600350035003200330037003700330030000000 .

With the aforementioned scenario above, the researcher prompt to conduct this study on the influence of broken home on the behavior and academic performance of students in order to create an action plan to help the pupils/learners find success and overcome unpleasant experiences.

2.       MATERIALS AND METHODS

2.1. research design.

This study utilize a descriptive- survey design. Surveys are often part of research designs (usually in the form of a questionnaire) and in this study, a survey is used to probe the pupil’s knowledge with regards to the influence of broken families on their mental development and academic success.

2.2. ENVIRONMENT AND PARTICIPANTS

The target respondents for the study were the purposively selected elementary pupils of elementary schools in District III of Ubay, Bohol, Philippines who were from broken family during the school year 2019-2020. The location is the biggest municipality in the province of Bohol which composed of 44 barangays and about 150 kilometers away from the capital city of Tagbilaran. The map of Ubay, Bohol, Philippines was presented in figure 1.

There were a total of three hundred (300) identified public elementary school pupils that belonged to broken families in Ubay district broken down as one hundred forty - nine (149) males and one hundred fifty - one (151) females from grade one to seven.

Figure 1: Map of Bohol, Philippines      

2.3. MATERIALS

This study employed modified questionnaire and direct observation in collecting data from the field. The questionnaires were close ended with alternatives provided for respondents to choose from. Respondents were assisted by the researchers with the help of their class adviser. The said questionnaire was pilot tested in order to validate the content statements and its reliability through the assessment of the statistician.

The results were tabulated, interpreted and discussed as basis in analyzing and interpreting the data. The researchers used percentage, weighted mean, Chi – square test of independence, and Spearman Rank Coefficient Correlation.

3.       RESULTS AND DISCUSSIONS

This study seeks to evaluate the effects of broken family on the behavioral development and academic success of pupils in the public elementary school of Ubay, Bohol, Philippines.

Profile of The Respondents

Table 1: Profile of the Respondents

      Age- Out of the three hundred (300) children, forty-seven (47) children belonged to the age of six years old; thirty – nine (39) children having the age of seven years old; forty (40) children were eight years old; fifty- five (55) children were nine years old; forty – eight under ten years old; and seventy – one   (71) children   belonged to   11 and above years old respectively.

      Sex- One hundred forty - nine (149) out of the three hundred children (300) children were males while, there were one hundred fifty - one (151) female- respondents.

      Grade Level- Out of the three hundred (300) respondents, seventy (70) of them were in grade six which mark the highest; while the grade five, grade two and grade three has forty-five (45) respondents which mark the lowest.

      Number of Siblings- The highest number of siblings were one hundred twenty –two (122) who were under the bracket of below 2; hence, there were three (3) of them belong to 9-10 bracket and rank as the lowest;

      Person stays with- Out of three hundred (300) children, ninety-three (93) of them were under the care of their mother which is the highest; while only one (1) only of them was staying with a friend which mark the lowest.

Teachers’ assessment on the behavioral developmen t of the pupil-respondents’ living in a broken family. The first in rank was statement no. 1 “Achieves mutual understanding of and commitment to decisions” with the weighted mean of 3.08 or describe as frequently followed by item number 4 “Connects with people” with a weighted mean of 2.90 or frequently, while the lowest in rank was statement number 11 “Keeps views and ideas to self”, with the weighted mean of 2.28 or describe as sometimes. Children enrolled in the elementary school of Ubay, Bohol, Philippines possessed a desirable attitude of a learner where commitment and relationship is observed in school.

Table 2: Teachers’ Assessment on Behavioral Development of Pupil-Respondents Living in a Broken Family N= 300

      Rating Scale        Verbal Interpretation (VI)                           Rating Scale        Verbal Interpretation (VI)          

      3.25 – 4.00          Always (A)                                                         1.75 – 2.49          Sometimes (S)

      2.50 – 3.24          Frequently (F)                                                  1.00 – 1.74          Not at All (NA)

Teachers’ assessment on the academic success of the pupils’ living in a broken family. The highest in rank was statement 3 “Attend to class regularly” with the weighted mean of 2.93 or describe as agree, followed by statement number 7 “observes punctuality and attend to class regularly” with a weighted mean of 2.81 or Agree, meanwhile the statement number 11 “Able to achieve in honor roll”, was the lowest weighted mean of 2.32 or describe as disagree. The pupil-respondents were responsibly managed to attend classes regularly. These pupils tried to overcome adversity and fulfill goals in life even they have experienced the said condition.

Table 3: Teachers’ Assessment on the Academic Success of Pupil-Respondents Living in a Broken Family N= 300

      3.25 – 4.00          Always (A)                               1.75 – 2.49          Sometimes (S)

      2.50 – 3.24          Frequently (F)                         1.00 – 1.74          Not at All (NA)

Relationship between the profile and behavioral development of the pupil-respondents living in a broken family. The result shown that there is no significant relationship between the behavioral development and profile of the pupil-respondents living in a broken family in terms of age, sex, grade level, number of siblings, and persons stay with since the corresponding significant values of 0.135, 0.408, 0.127, 0.538, and 0.556 are greater than 0.05 level of significance. Thus, this study accepts the null hypothesis. This implies that the respondents’ age, sex, grade level, number of siblings, and persons stay with did not vary to their behavioral development, however the pupil-respondents were doing the things expected from them such as mutual understanding and commitment, and builds attachment with people especially in school.

Table 4: Relationship Between the Profile and Behavioral Development of the Pupil-Respondents Living in a Broken Family N = 300

Relationship between behavioral development and academic success of the pupil-respondents living in a broken family. The result revealed that there was a significant relationship between the behavioral development and academic success of the pupil-respondents living in a broken family since the computed correlation value of 0.154 with a significant value of 0.008 is lesser than 0.05 level of significance. Thus, the null hypothesis was rejected. This denotes that academic success of the pupils depends on their behavior development. Being with a broken family is not structurally intact, as a result of divorce, separation, death of one of parent and illegitimacy but they have an equal opportunity and chance to achieve success in school depending on how much work they will perform on it.

Table 5: Relationship Between Behavioral Development and Academic Success of the Pupil-Respondents Living in a Broken Family N = 300

4.       CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

4.1. conclusions.

It was found out that age, sex, grade level, number of siblings, and person stays with has no direct influence to the pupils’ behavioral development, and however, academic success of the pupils depends on their behavior development. Therefore, it was concluded that the attitude and behavior of the learner affects academic success.

4.2. RECOMMENDATIONS

Based from the results of this study, the researchers came-up with the following recommendations. There should be an action plan implementation in school in order to help pupils under broken family achieve academic success; a peer facilitating group, team building, trainings and symposia should be included in the school guidance program to cater the behavioral and academic needs of the pupils; and the school should create peer facilitating group spearheaded by a guidance counselor/ adviser to have a regular monitoring and assistance for pupils with special educational needs.

SOURCES OF FUNDING

This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

CONFLICT OF INTEREST

The author have declared that no competing interests exist.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT

He full support of the Department of Education especially the Anoling National High School, and to the Bohol Island State University- Candijay Campus, Cogtong, Candijay, Bohol, Philippines .

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Buhay Estudyante: The Lives of Students from Broken Families Amidst the Pandemic

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The paper does not mention any advantages of being in a broken family. The paper focuses on describing the challenges and effects on academic performance that students from broken families experience during the pandemic.

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Impact of Broken Family on Academic Performance of Grade 6 Students at San Bartolome Elementary School

  • Mary Joy Avila
  • Edna Bertos
  • Conney Lachica
  • Dinah Mae Narciso
  • Rachel Zepeda
  • Amelia Ablen, Ph.D.

A broken family is defined as a family that is split or separated due to a variety of reasons. A broken family can cause children to question their self-worth, thereby leading to experiencing unnecessary grief, guilt, and confusion. Life in a broken home is having a single parent, and the said family can be stressful for both the child and the parent. A family could be broken due to several reasons, but the most common are financial matters, a behavior of parents, religion, infidelity, and parental influence or a friend’s influence. These causes can affect the student’s academic performance, such as getting low grades, cutting classes, suffering from depression, getting misguided, and deciding to be independent. A descriptive method was used in this study, and purposive sampling was used to choose 20 Grade 6students as respondents. The gathered data were constructed through a checklist that was pretested to two Grade 5students who were not part of the respondents for validation. The questionnaires were administered personally to briefly explain their contents and patiently wait for the respondents to fill it up and ensure 100% retrieval of the said instrument. The raw data were reviewed, tallied, and analyzed using different statistical tools, such as frequency and percentage distribution, weighted mean, and ranking. The result showed that the highest weighted mean of 4.05 was obtained for having unfaithful parents, having irresponsible parents obtained the weighted mean of 4, and jealousy achieved the weighted mean of 3.75. These causes can affect the academic performance of students. The academic performance of students gets affected because they cannot focus on their studies. The highest impact was depression with the weighted mean of 4.65, cutting classes obtained the weighted mean of 4.15, and having low grades obtained the weighted mean of 4.1. These are the top five recommendations as ranked by the respondents: 1. parents should give love, guidance, and support; 2. teachers should be loving and understanding; 3. students should have a quiet place to study; 4. students should lessen their time spent watching tv and playing computer games; and 5. students, parents, and teachers should collaborate. The results showed that parents should make sure that although they are separated from their children, they can still give the attention their children need from their parents. In school, teachers must understand the behavior of the affected students and give them support. Students can make their situation a source of inspiration to persevere and achieve their goals in life.

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Effect of Broken Family to Students Performance

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The Family is an essential factor for a human's whole-being, everything about a man, his background, attitude, all of his achievements, his honor and dignity, relies on the structure of the family a man lives in with. A family is composed of a father a mother and their offspring, bonded by their love for each other.

Related Papers

Alonge Imole-Ayo

In Nigeria today as well as so many other countries of the world, Broken Homes as a result of divorce among so many contributing factors does not affect just the partners (husband and wife) but also the offspring from the relationship. Though Broken Homes which has resulted in the wild spread of single parents mostly mothers has not been given much attention to. This is because a lot of people now see it as a norm while others see it as being a soothing option for a relationship that can no longer hold ends. In fact, some countries have made it a social norm and even passed it into law for legalization. But the societies at large pay little or no attention to its adverse effect on the physical, psychological and social effects on the development of children especially those in the primary schools (Pupils). Since education has its scope extended to the physical, psychological, moral and social development and growth of a young mind, therefore, the researcher has deemed it fit to base this research work on the "Effect of Broken Homes on the Academic Performance of Primary School Pupils" using Bosso Local Government Area of Niger State as a case study. Questionnaires were administered to one hundred and twenty (120) respondents in the study area covering four (4) schools in Shango, Gidan Kwanu, Mekunkele and Bosso. The respondents were selected using simple random sampling technique. Conclusion and recommendation were made after the summary of the findings and other analysis.

research paper about broken family in the philippines

justinemark gito

Adriel ayyase Palentinosdelvalle

Behavioral problems become a devastating dilemma among adolescents. Most of them belong to a broken family or single parent family. This family stress causes lack of parental support and guidance which results to adolescents' emotional and behavioral problems. This leads to disrespectful and aggressive behavior of adolescents. Mediocre teenagers tend to lie to their parents, thus making it the most manifested behavioral problem. While, violent behaviors such as trying to hurt or kill others are not primarily a choice for them. This proves that the present adolescents did not yet reach the peak of cruelness. However, these behaviors affect the adolescents' health, emotional, and social status. Most of them experienced eating disorders and exhibited poor self-esteem. Because of having low self-confidence, they are having problem in socialization. Problem in making friends and keeping friends was the common dilemma in terms of their social status. Due to their difficult situation, they tend to cope negatively. They still find vices as a solution to forget their situation for a period of time. Though, there are few adolescents cope positively by engaging themselves in sports. On the other hand, some of them shared their insights and gave their best advices to adolescents experiencing the same situation. They uttered that adolescents must be optimistic. They have to express their emotions in order for them to lessen their loneliness. Instead of dwelling to negative people, they should engage themselves to sports or any organizations that will help them to discover their self-worth. Accepting the reality and their situation will help them to free from emotional distress. But the most important is to love their selves.

David Metaloro

Abstract The increase of family breakdown down rate in Juba City has been due to alcohol and drugs addiction, financial problems, death, plus psychological, sexual and emotional abuse, threatening diseases like HIV/AIDs and inability to resolve conflict among others. The objective of the study was to investigate the causes of family breakdown and its effects on the children in Juba City. The effects of family breakdown on children include difficulties in school, stress, early engagement in sexual activities, insecure and afraid of the future, depression and fear of being abandoned. The forms of family breakdown identified during the study include death, separation and divorce. The rate of the family breakage was indicating 78.3%, though the study was based in Juba city, it reflects the entire country since all of the ten states’ habitants were included in study. Some of the cultural practices were found of backing up the high rate of family breakdown and such practices include force marriage, polygamy marriage, inheritance of widowers and high bride wealth. The study proved communication skills, creation of family laws, supporting the children of the low families, marriage preparation and parenting new initiatives and information giving and mediation are the fundamental alternative solution to family breakdown. In conclusion, the study proved the family breakdown affects the children performance in schools in line with other effects such as; stress, depression, fear of being abandoned, insecure and afraid of the future and torn in two among others.

Azuka Ugo , igwe kingsley ogazi

The study was an investigation into the relationship between teachers motivation and secondary school students academic performance in biology. The study was carried out in Orumba South Local Government Area of Anambra state. The population of the study comprised of thirteen owned government Secondary Schools in Orumba South Local Government Area, Anambra state. Out of thirteen secondary schools, seven schools were used for the study. The population size of the study consists of 13 Biology Teachers and 409 SSII students. The sampling size of the study consists of 210 for both teachers and students. Four research question were formulated. A forty four item questionnaire was used for data collection. The data collection was analyzed using mean and standard deviation. The hypothesis for the study was tested at 0.05 level of significance using t –test. Results from the study revealed that reinforcement either by gifts or praise, demonstration method of teaching, introducing lesson in a stimulating manner etc enhances academic performance of the students. It was also revealed that use of lecture or the chalk and talk method of teaching and elaborating on students poor performance do not improve student’s academic performance. The results also indicated that there is no significant difference between the mean response score of students and teachers on the relationship between the teachers motivational therapies and students academic performance in Biology. Based on the findings, some recommendations were also made. The implication of the study was that use of reinforcement either by gifts or praises, making use of instructional materials while teaching and linking learning with play activities tend to motivate and retain the interest of students to learn biology, positive comment should be used by the teacher to increase the interest of the students in learning behavior. Dull students should be encouraged and advised on ways to improve. The recommendation of this study was that classroom teachers should improve on the use of different methods in teaching; this will help to motivate student to learn biology. Biology teacher should try and employ all these motivational therapies while teaching Biology such as improvisation of instructional materials well specified explanation, introducing lesson in a stimulating manner e. t. c

Happee Mantua

Broken family introduction, causes, effects and students reactions and coping strategies

Alvin Saranillo

Nimi Jackreece

This research work examined the effect of Broken Home on Academic Performance of Secondary School Students in Ohimini Local Government Area of Benue State. Four hundred students were randomly selected from eight Senior Secondary Schools in Ohimini Local Government to form the sample for this study. Eighteen item opinion questionnaires was developed and administered. The questionnaire was validated by seasoned experts drawn from measurement and evaluation section of the Department of Educational Foundations and Department of Psychology, Benue State University, Makurdi. Apart from the primary data collected via questionnaire, secondary data was also used in this research. Economics results of the sampled schools terminal examination as kept by the schools were collected and used. The means and simple percentage were used to answer the research questions while the t-test and chi-square statistic were used to test the hypotheses. The result revealed that Broken Home exerts a lot of Effect on Academic Performance of Secondary School Students in Ohimini Local Government Area of Benue State. It was among others recommended that; the government and school proprietors should employ school counselors in all secondary schools to provide the necessary assistance to children from broken homes, Parents especially single and foster parents should adequately supervise children to boost their self-esteem.

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These Children Of Broken Families Are Pushing For The Legalization Of Divorce In The Country, Here’s Why

Some children believe that they should be part of the discussion on whether divorce should be allowed in the Philippines because they are also affected by family situations.

These Children Of Broken Families Are Pushing For The Legalization Of Divorce In The Country, Here’s Why

For some children who grew up in “toxic” households, watching their parents decide to break their wedding vow of “‘til death do us part” and move on with their lives separately was always going to be a painful memory, but they would rather go through it than bear a life of endless trauma.

Under the country’s existing laws, spouses who have fallen out of love with each other after years of marriage have limited options once they mutually agree to separate, for reasons other than death, presumption of death of either one of them, or in cases of abandonment.

They can file for annulment, nullity of marriage, and legal separation, but divorce is still out of the question. Divorce is only available for Muslim Filipinos, whose marriages are governed by the Code of Muslim Personal Laws, or those who got married in foreign countries where it is allowed.

Recently, longstanding debates about the legalization of divorce in the Philippines have resurfaced after Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman as well as Senators Risa Hontiveros, Robin Padilla and Raffy Tulfo filed separate divorce bills at the opening of the first regular session of the 19 th  Congress.  

Although these legislative proposals varied in their grounds and technicalities, Filipinos remained divided on the issue with members of the Catholic Church, on the one hand, still opposed to the idea of divorce on the belief that it would destroy the family and the sanctity of marriage.

On the other hand, 53 percent of adult Filipinos nationwide were supportive of the legalization of divorce for irreconcilably separated couples, according to a Social Weather Stations  survey  released in 2017.

Among those who are advocating for divorce are children of separated parents like 25-year-old freelance graphic designer Isabel Drilon. She is convinced that sometimes a couple’s decision to stay together does more harm to their children than good.

“I’m very [much] in favor [of divorce] because I think Filipinos, in general, are stuck in the Asian family thinking that you should sacrifice everything for your family [and] withstand every kind of trauma,” Drilon said, challenging the conventional wisdom on familial bonds.

“I think a lot of mothers and fathers lose their [sense] of self when they don’t have an opportunity to be let go in a relationship that isn't working anymore,” she added.

Drilon shared her parents had legally separated when their marriage failed, thinking it was the “more peaceful” option for their family.

Legal separation or annulment are what organizations like the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) would often advise as a recourse for married couples who have irreconcilable differences or individuals who want to get out of abusive relationships instead of seeking divorce.

CBCP Public Affairs executive secretary Fr. Jerome Secillano explained that the church would intervene in some cases, especially when their counseling is sought, to help protect marriages. Once they see that legal separation is not enough as an option, they would help in the annulment process.

In legal separation, the formerly married couple cannot remarry; in annulment, remarriage is allowed. There are also two kinds of annulment: ecclesiastical, which is granted by the church; and civil, which is declared by the court. Under this procedure, the marriage was valid until it was revoked.

Meanwhile, nullity of marriage may be applied when either one of the spouses was under 18 at the time of marriage, or psychologically incapacitated, among other grounds. In this case, the court may declare a marriage null and void from the beginning (void ab initio) as if it never happened.  

Fr. Secillano does not support divorce because he thinks “it would lead to a continuous separation and destruction of Filipino families.” He also believes that divorce would have more negative effects on the lives of children who felt torn between two parents in the long run.   

Divorce as better alternative

But Drilon held a different view. The separation of her parents was a result of repetitive fights. Her mother’s career was peaking, while her father struggled to find jobs in Metro Manila, which drove a wedge between them. She said her mother could be very prideful and her father could be very sensitive.

“[F]rom what I can remember as a young kid, there was always tension in the house, like my mom had to be very patient with my dad because simple things would trigger him… One snap of a finger can make [him] angry and [their] fights [became] more frequent,” she recalled.

It did not help that her father turned to alcohol as a coping mechanism, Drilon said. His intoxication would transform him into a “very different person,” prompting her mother to leave their house one day together with her and her younger sister.

“They haven’t been living together for almost six to 10 years… It’s much more peaceful in the house now for me. I don’t have to be scared of my dad coming home drunk and having to take care of him, or tiptoe around him, so he won’t get angry or fly into a rage,” Drilon shared.

Despite living apart for more than a decade now, Drilon said her parents have not yet filed for an annulment because it is expensive and she respects their decision. She is aware that if her parents stayed together, she and her sister would probably have a more difficult childhood.

In retrospect, however, Drilon wished children, especially if they have already come of age, would have a say on these matters, too – a sentiment shared by many other children and young adults who came from broken families.  

“It can be very situational. But I think in those kinds of [circumstances], especially if the separation is happening, when the children are already in the legal age or can make [up their own minds], they should be part of that decision. They shouldn’t be left out,” Drilon said.

For Kristine Cordoviz, a 30-year-old virtual assistant, it was only a matter of time before her parents’ marriage fell apart. Her mother only got pregnant, so she was forced to wed her father, even if both of them were hesitant to tie the knot. Their marriage was annulled in 2004.  

“At the beginning, everything was well and fine. But if you were forced into marriage without having a mindset of being married, like you’re just in that college mindset, then for sure you wouldn’t really stay where you are,” she said.

Cordoviz disclosed that her father had affairs with other women. Her mother initially tried to put up with it despite the heartache, “for the sake of the children,” but she eventually realized it was not OK and would only prolong their misery.

“At that time, we didn’t know that our father was into infidelity… [We just thought] it was very common for parents to fight or to have a lot of disagreements,” she said, implying that her mother made the tough decision to file for annulment because she did not want to set a bad example.

But Cordoviz understood – based on the experience of her mother – that while an annulment could set you free from a bad marriage, the painful memories unearthed through this “hard” and “daunting” process could leave emotional scars on all affected parties that might take a longer time to heal.

“It is something that families should not have to go through [because] it was really a long and emotional process, and mentally, it was actually very draining,” Cordoviz said. Her parents’ annulment took two years to be granted.

According to data from the Office of the Solicitor General, there were 5,135 annulment cases filed and two appeals made to the Supreme Court as of 2021. The latest court decision on annulment cases in the country was made in 2016 with only one out of 9,326 cases resolved.

As of Jan. 31 this year, there were no other final decisions released on annulment petitions filed in 2017 (9,458 cases), 2018 (9,505 cases), 2019 (8,501 cases), 2020 (4,532 cases) and 2021, excluding the appealed cases from 2017 to 2022. 

Cordoviz, therefore, is also pushing for a divorce law so that someone like her mother would not have been forced to play the “bad guy” or the guilty spouse in court, against her own better judgment, during the annulment hearings just so she could formally end her marriage.

“It’s really sad because all the dirty things come out and they would scrutinize everything in court. Because of religion, they had to really, really, really make sure that this relationship is really, really bad before they allow you to separate or to get annulled,” she said.

Although she comes from a very religious family herself, Cordoviz believes that God is not cruel enough to let a person stay in a toxic relationship. Religious beliefs must also not be forced on other people or considered a defining factor when public officials deliberate on our laws, she argued.

“It’s not about that… [P]eople should still have the choice,” Cordoviz said, downplaying fears that people might abuse the law once the divorce bill is passed. Drilon shared the same sentiment, emphasizing that Filipinos in troubled marriages must not be restricted to limited options.

“If you can provide the two options, why not do that instead? Why are you guys stopping people from filing a divorce if technically, in some parts, it is the same as annulment? You were okay with annulment. Why don’t you go ahead with divorce?” Drilon asked.

Divorce is not the best solution

Fr. Secillano explained that invalidating a marriage through divorce violates church teachings about the sacrament of matrimony. Once a couple decides to get married in a Catholic ceremony, they don’t just enter into a legal contract but a covenant bound by Canon Law.

“The Church did not invent marriage. The State also did not invent marriage. If we sum it up, God ordained marriage himself,” the CBCP official said. This is why the line “until death do us part” is always included in the exchange of wedding vows between spouses.

“Legislators did not just come up with the definition or concept of marriage. It’s not like that. We had our idea of marriage because of the Genesis experience… So, on our part as a church, we cannot just invalidate everything that came from the Lord,” Fr. Secillano explained further.

He reiterated that their role as the Church is to strengthen and defend the teachings of God, especially when under attack. Fr. Secillano also appealed to the government to amend the existing grounds and lower the financial charges for annulment instead of pushing for a divorce.

“If [the government is really] pro-poor as they are alleging, they can lower the charge for civil annulment. Second, if they can see that Filipinos are having a hard time [filing an annulment] because the grounds are lacking, they can amend these existing grounds,” he said.

Also, while there are different ways to sever the marital ties between a lawfully wedded couple, the rules that govern them under Philippine jurisprudence are not the same. There are also several studies made in countries where divorce is legal, showing that this is not always the best solution.

Lawyer and columnist Jemy Gatdula, vice chairman for jurisprudence and legal philosophy at the Philippine Judicial Academy of the Supreme Court, laid out some of the counterarguments on divorce in his column published by the BusinessWorld last April 7.

“Rather than divorce, the better policy is to look for ways to raise the quality of marriages,” Gatdula wrote in an opinion piece titled “ The Philippines is right to reject divorce .” He is not convinced that spouses in troubled marriages are better off when they get divorced and neither do their children.

From a legal standpoint, Gatdula is advocating for the protection of marriage because the “stability of a country is very much dependent on it,” stemming from the fact that the family is the basic unit of society.

“Many divorces being contemplated are simply cases of one spouse self-indulgently wanting to ‘self-actualize’ even though the marriage or the family are not undergoing any problem whatsoever. The promotion of virtue and encouragement leading away from self-centeredness is a good step forward,” he said.

“The other is to discourage premarital cohabitation,” Gatdula added, citing the latter as a “significant risk factor for divorce,” according to research published by Stanford University Professor Michael J. Rosenfeld and data scientist Katharina Roesler.

Gatdula also does not believe that most children of divorced parents grow up to be well-adjusted adults. He argued that in some cases, divorce has far more negative impact than parental death, especially on the psychosocial development of younger children.

“This is because in families where a parent has died, children often receive support from extended family members and friends of the deceased parent, who take over some parenting duties and support children’s educational attainment,” he wrote.

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research paper about broken family in the philippines

Promisekit.org

What is the percentage of broken families in the Philippines?

Table of Contents

Forty-eight percent of families claimed they are poor, 23 percent “not poor” and 29 percent placed themselves on the borderline, according to the SWS poll fielded from June 23 to 26.

How many families in the Philippines suffer from poverty?

Among families, the First Semester 2021 poverty incidence was estimated at 18.0 percent, which is equivalent to around 4.74 million poor families. Meanwhile, the subsistence incidence among families was recorded at 7.1 percent, or around 1.87 million food poor families in the first semester of 2021. (Tables 1 and 3).

How many poor families are in the Philippines in 2020?

This translates to 3.9 million more Filipinos living in poverty amid the coronavirus pandemic. At the family level, poverty incidence stood at 18%, higher than the 16.2% recorded three years ago. This is equivalent to 4.74 million families, higher than the 4.04 million in 2018.

How many children are neglected in the Philippines?

The Philippines has an abandoned children problem. About 1.8 million children in the country, more than 1% of its entire population, are “abandoned or neglected,” according to the United Nations’ Children’s Rights & Emergency Relief Organization.

What causes broken family in the Philippines?

A study by Margot Galang (2015) on Implication of Broken Marriages to Filipino Children, the common reasons why Filipino couples separate include financial problems, lack of communication, infidelity, and domestic violence.

What are the common problem of Filipino family?

Disintegration of families, juvenile delinquency, domestic violence, substance abuse, dangers of drugs, ways to help children say “NO’ to drugs, parental absenteeism, economic difficulties, absence of family goals and values, early sexual involvement, negative influence of media.

What is the statistics of poverty in the Philippines?

As reported by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) today, the poverty incidence among the population increased to 23.7 percent during the first half of 2021 from 21.1 percent in the same period of 2018. This translates to 3.9 million more Filipinos living in poverty.

How many homeless children are there in the Philippines?

250,000 homeless children Homeless children are among the most vulnerable of the homeless in the Philippines. There are approximately 250,000 homeless children; however, that number could be as high as 1 million. Children leave home and end up on the streets because of the excessive beating from their parents, poverty or sexual exploitation.

How many orphans are there in the Philippines 2020?

About 1.8 million children in the Philippines are under the status of abandoned or neglected.

What are the causes of broken family?

Divorce is claimed to be the main reason behind broken family. The common disputes between a husband and a wife are the financial issue, sexual misunderstanding, early marriage, teen pregnancy, education, health problem, etc. When the parents get divorced, usually either of them or sometime both of them leave home.

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research paper about broken family in the philippines

‘There’s No Other Job’: The Colonial Roots of Philippine Poverty

Decades after independence, the Philippines lacks the kind of factory economy that has lifted up other Asian nations, tying millions to farm work.

Plantation workers picking pineapples. Credit... Photographs and Video by Jes Aznar

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By Peter S. Goodman

Photographs and Video by Jes Aznar

Peter S. Goodman reported from Mindanao and Manila in the Philippines and from Los Angeles.

  • Dec. 30, 2023

Rodino Sawan stepped into the wire harness and dug his toes into the muddy track that threads the sweltering plantation. He pushed forward, straining against the cargo trailing behind him: 25 bunches of freshly harvested bananas strung from hooks attached to an assembly line.

Six days a week, Mr. Sawan, 55, a father of five, tows batches of fruit that weigh 1,500 pounds to a nearby processing plant, often as planes buzz overhead, misting down pesticides. He returns home with aches in his back and daily wages of 380 Philippine pesos, or about $6.80.

One day last year, the plantation bosses fired him. The next day, they hired him back into the same role as a contractor, cutting his pay by 25 percent.

“Now, we can barely afford rice,” Mr. Sawan said. Still, he continued to show up, resigned to the reality that, on the island of Mindanao, as in much of the rural Philippines, plantation work is often the only work.

“It’s an insult,” he said. “But there’s no other job, so what can I do?”

The desperation confronting tens of millions of landless Filipinos stems in part from policies imposed by the powers that controlled the archipelago for centuries — first Spain, and then the United States.

In a grove of banana trees, Rodino Sawan and another man grasp a bundle of blue plastic dangling between them from a contraption made of metal pipes.

In a region defined by upward mobility through manufacturing, the Philippines stands out as a nation still heavily reliant on agriculture — a legacy of outside rule. Nearly 80 years after the country secured independence, the colonial era still shapes the structure of its economy.

Because the United States opted not to engage in large-scale redistribution of land, families that collaborated with colonial authorities retain oligarchic control over the soil and dominate the political sphere. Policies engineered to make the country dependent on American factory goods have left the Philippines with a much smaller industrial base than many economies in Asia.

“The U.S. forced land reform on a whole lot of different countries in the region, Japan included, because of World War II,” said Cesi Cruz, a political scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles. “But in the Philippines, because they were fighting on the same side, they did not want to punish their ally economically by forcing all these restrictions on them.”

Over the last half century in much of East and Southeast Asia, national leaders have pursued a development strategy that has rescued hundreds of millions of people from poverty, courting foreign investment to construct export-oriented industry. Farmers gained greater incomes through factory work, making basic goods like textiles and clothing before evolving into electronics, computer chips and cars.

research paper about broken family in the philippines

Yet in most of the Philippines, factory jobs are few, leaving landless people at the mercy of the wealthy families that control the plantations. Manufacturing makes up only 17 percent of the national economy, compared with 26 percent in South Korea, 27 percent in Thailand and 28 percent in China, according to World Bank data . Even Sri Lanka (20 percent) and Cambodia (18 percent), two of the poorest countries in Asia, have slightly higher shares.

The shortage of manufacturing and the lopsided distribution of land are part of the reason that a country with some of the most fertile soils on earth is plagued by hunger . It helps explain why roughly one-fifth of this nation of 117 million people is officially poor, and why nearly two million Filipinos work overseas, from construction sites in the Persian Gulf to ships and hospitals worldwide, sending home critical infusions of cash.

“You have an export strategy for Filipinos,” said Ronald U. Mendoza, an international development expert at Ateneo University in Manila. “This is really a middle class that we should have had in the country.”

photo

Cooking copra, from which coconut oil is extracted.

A makeshift kiln for cooking the copra.

One-fifth of Filipinos are officially poor, and malnutrition plagues the country.

Those who remain at home in rural areas typically plant and harvest pineapples, coconuts and bananas, laboring largely for the benefit of the wealthy, powerful families that preside over land.

The plantation where Mr. Sawan works is controlled by Lapanday Foods, which exports bananas and pineapple to wealthy countries in Asia and the Middle East. Its founder, Luis F. Lorenzo Sr., was a former governor of Davao del Sur, a province in Mindanao, and a senior executive at Del Monte, the multinational fruit conglomerate. His son Luis P. Lorenzo Jr., known as Cito, is a former agriculture secretary of the Philippines.

The founder’s eldest daughter, Regina Angela Lorenzo, known as Rica, oversees Lapanday from a corporate office in the Philippine capital, Manila, in a district full of five-star hotels, glittering restaurants and luxury car dealerships. She described her family as “a small player” in agribusiness.

“We employ people,” she said. “We add tax revenue. We make productive use of the land.”

Her sister Isa Lorenzo owns art galleries in Manila and Lower Manhattan — Silverlens New York, where she features modern Southeast Asian artists. An inaugural exhibit last fall put the spotlight on “issues around the environment, community, and development,” including the question: “Who owns the land?”

photo

A timber farm in Mindanao, where some forests once home to Indigenous groups have been seized.

Manufacturing makes up just 17 percent of the Philippine economy.

Despite gaining titles, some Indigenous people have been kept from reclaiming their property.

‘Our Ancestors Are Buried There’

Disputes over who owns the land dominate life for the Manobo, an Indigenous tribe in the highlands of central Mindanao.

For generations, members of the community lived along the banks of the Pulangi river, under the shade of teak and mahogany trees. They harvested cassava, hunted wild boar and caught fish from the river. They drank from a pristine spring.

“Our ancestors are buried there,” said the chief of the community, Rolando Anglao, 49. “That is the land that we inherited from them.”

There , he indicated, gesturing toward the other side of a busy highway. The forest was gone. In its place was a pineapple plantation stretching across nearly 3,000 acres. The land was ringed by barbed wire and guarded by an armed security brigade.

According to Mr. Anglao, the Lorenzo family seized the tribe’s land. One morning in February 2016, roughly 50 men arrived in trucks and began firing their rifles in the air, sending 1,490 members of the tribe scurrying away, he said.

Mr. Anglao, his wife and their two sons were among 100 families that live in shacks constructed with plastic and sheets of corrugated aluminum on the shoulder of the highway. They drink from shallow wells tainted with chemical runoff from surrounding plantations, he said. Children are frequently sick with amoebic dysentery. Tractor-trailers barrel through at all hours, their air horns blaring, carrying loads of sugar cane and pineapples to processing plants.

Over the years, the tribe has tried and failed to persuade local prosecutors to pursue charges against Pablo Lorenzo III, the president of the local company that controls the plantation, and — not incidentally — the mayor of the surrounding town of Quezon.

This year, the tribe secured legal title from the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples, a government body. But the commission has yet to formally record the deed. Mr. Lorenzo has accused the tribe of supporting an insurgency, the New People’s Army, said Ricardo V. Mateo, a lawyer at the commission’s office in Cagayan de Oro. That has prevented the tribe from reclaiming the land by prompting an investigation by the Philippine military.

Meanwhile, the security cordon remains, with the tribe on the outside.

“It’s the power of Pablo Lorenzo,” Mr. Anglao said. “He’s above the law.”

In an interview at city hall in Quezon, Mr. Lorenzo denied seizing the land.

“It’s a scam,” he said. “Those people claiming that — they were never even on that land.”

Still, he acknowledged offering the tribe “a small amount of money” to relinquish its claims.

His family’s wealth traces back to his grandfather, who worked as a corporate lawyer representing American investors, Mr. Lorenzo said. He personally owns 15 to 20 percent of the company that developed the plantation, he said.

photo

The lack of nonfarm jobs is a legacy of policies from colonial powers that once ruled the Philippines.

In the Philippines, the U.S. tested policies like pegging currency values to gold.

“The Philippine government could not determine the price of the peso without consent from Washington.”

Colonial Engineering

Americans did not create the inequality that defines the Philippine economy. Spanish authorities allowed Christian missionaries to seize land while forcing natives to make onerous rent payments.

But after the United States captured the archipelago following a war with Spain in 1898, the colonial administration reinforced the uneven control of soil through trade policy.

Agribusiness ventures in the Philippines gained access to the American market, free of tariffs. In exchange, American industry secured the right to export manufactured goods to the Philippines without duty. Tariffs on other countries kept out products from the rest of the world.

The United States used the Philippines as a laboratory for economic policies that were contentious at home, among them pegging the value of the national currency to gold, said Lisandro Claudio, a historian at the University of California, Berkeley. That kept the Philippine peso strong against the dollar, lowering the price of American goods and discouraging the creation of national industry.

Even after the Philippines secured independence in 1946, that basic arrangement held. The country had been decimated by World War II, prompting the United States to deliver $620 million in reconstruction aid. But the money was conditioned on the Philippines accepting the indignities of the Bell Trade Act, which perpetuated key aspects of the colonial arrangement.

“The most odious part of that treaty was really the peso provision,” Mr. Claudio said. “The Philippine government could not determine the price of the peso without consent from Washington.”

A strong peso has remained a cardinal principle of Philippine policy ever since, in contrast to neighboring countries. From China to Japan to Thailand, officials have favored weaker currencies to make their products cheaper on world markets, boosting their efforts to industrialize.

Meanwhile, the powerful and wealthy families that control business have lacked incentive to innovate, unlike in surrounding economies where land redistribution has generated pressures for risk-taking and experimentation.

“Then you force the next generation to figure out, ‘What can we do to compete?’” said Norman G. Owen, an economic historian affiliated with the University of Hong Kong. “But the United States didn’t do that in the Philippines, and the Filipinos didn’t do that to themselves, and here we are.”

photo

Those who remain in rural areas typically plant and harvest pineapples, coconut and bananas, laboring largely for the benefit of the wealthy.

Generations of Filipinos have worked on the plantations.

Many of the farmworkers earn so little, they borrow from loan sharks.

‘A Tough Life’

On a mercifully overcast morning, with low gray clouds blotting out the tropical sun, a team of 48 workers pulled weeds from the soil of a Del Monte pineapple plantation in northern Mindanao.

The leader of the crew, Ruel Mulato, 43, was a third-generation plantation worker. His grandfather had worked for an American boss in a job that has changed little over the decades. Then as now, people hunkered over the soil and used their hands, earning too little to feed their families, forcing many households to borrow from loan sharks.

Mr. Mulato had seemingly escaped that fate. He had worked as a nursing assistant on the island of Bohol, as a security guard in Manila and as a crane driver in Saudi Arabia.

But when his wife died suddenly in 2011, he moved home to take care of his daughter, then only 4 years old.

He took the job that was available — on the plantation.

He has remarried and has three more children. He was hopeful that they would find more rewarding work.

“This is very hard labor,” he said. “It’s a tough life.”

Peter S. Goodman is a reporter who covers the global economy. He writes about the intersection of economics and geopolitics, with particular emphasis on the consequences for people and their lives and livelihoods. More about Peter S. Goodman

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