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Cambios... ¿cómo influyen en los y las adolescentes de familias reconstituidas?

ABSTRACT A high rate of divorce exists in Puerto Rico, however, many divorced people decide to remarry, establishing a reconstituted family. In this new relation the biological mother or father shares with their new relationship (mother and father in law) and also with their children of their first relation. They can come into this relationship with their children or they can have children of their own. Our objective was to study how adolescent children of mothers and fathers who are divorced adjust to a newly reconstituted family and the changes that come as a result of being a part of this family. We selected adolescents because this is an important stage in a child�s development. Furthermore, in previous studies authors report that divorce affects adolescents more than other members of the family. We carried out semi-structured interviews with adults and adolescents of eight reconstituted families. The adolescents informed us of how negative and positive changes had affected them when the reconstituted family was formed. The adolescents reported that when forming part of a reconstituted family, they faced both negative and positive changes, such as change of school, distancing from relatives, spending time with relatives of their father or mother�s new spouse, improvement in the communication processes and the economical status. We recommend research and future interventions directed at this population. En Puerto Rico, al igual que en países de América Latina, el Caribe y Estados Unidos, existe una alta tasa de divorcios. Muchas personas divorciadas vuelven a casarse, estableciendo una familia reconstituida. En esta nueva relación, la madre o el padre biológico comparte con su pareja (madrastra o padrastro) e hijo/s e hija/s de la relación anterior. Nuestro objetivo fue estudiar cómo se ajustan los hijos e hijas adolescentes de padre y madre divorciados, que ahora integran una familia reconstituida, a los cambios que surgen como resultado de pertenecer a la misma. Seleccionamos personas adolescentes ya que ésta es una etapa de transición importante en su desarrollo. Además, en estudios previos se señala que el divorcio afecta a los y las adolescentes más que a otros miembros del núcleo familiar. Realizamos entrevistas semi-estructuradas con integrantes adultos/as y adolescentes de ocho familias reconstituidas. Los y las adolescentes informaron que al formar parte de la familia reconstituida se enfrentaron a cambios negativos y positivos, entre ellos: cambio de escuela, alejamiento de familiares, compartir con familiares de la nueva pareja de su madre o padre, mejoría en los procesos de comunicación y en el estatus económico. Recomendamos investigaciones e intervenciones futuras dirigidas a esta población.

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