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Cultural-Historical Psychology

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 1816-5435

ISSN (online): 2224-8935

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/chp

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Started in 2005

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal

Affiliated ISCAR

 

«Voluntary Childlessness» Family through the Eyes of a Family Psychologist 1338

Snegireva T.V.
PhD in Psychology, Senior Researcher at the Psychological Institute of the Russian Academy of Education. Member of Editorial Council of the "Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy" Journal, Moscow, Russia
e-mail: moscowpj@mail.ru

Abstract
The paper analyzes the controversial socio-psychological phenomenon — the family system without children and, within it, the so-called 'voluntarily childless' families. This phenomenon is viewed through the prism of historical changes that have occurred in the former Soviet Union in the late twentieth century. The psychological characteristics of marital relations in these families and mechanisms of stability are discussed and compared with conventional nuclear families. The contradictory unity of the relationship between emotional closeness and separateness (differentiation) as well as the state of chaotic adaptation and reflexivity suggests that the experience that a childless couple gets in the process of the family establishment, psychologically is more complex than in families with children. Concern for the scientific status of a childless family in psychology — «the figure of silence» — is expressed. The question about the concept of the internal development of a family without children as a whole is raised. According to the author, the classical theory of family life cycle has lost its «universality» in the modern conditions and requires rethinking.

Keywords: «voluntarily childless» families, «shock»of change, relationships, family as a system, the legitimacy of childless families in science, development, adaptation, family life cycle

Column: Discussions And Discourses

For Reference

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