Broken Homes and Juvenile Delinquency Essay

Words: 2908
Pages: 12

Broken Homes and Juvenile Delinquency

I. Introduction Juveniles are thought to be mischievous, almost expected to be in trouble. Realizing and understand what is too far is a major factor. Any action has consequences, but the measure of recidivism is what determines a delinquent from simple mischief. Broken homes seem to have hardship written all over it. The link between a broken home and delinquency are strongly believed. Much controversy resides in what is thought to be a broken home and what defines a family. Many different definitions fit these words. It just seems logically to conclude that a broken home leads to delinquent acts. A broken home can result in economic hardships, loss of some affection, adequate
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Research has shown that exposure to parental discord regardless of family structure was a leading factor to misbehavior in children (Juby 26). Selection theory deals with pre-existing factors working toward the explanation of delinquency. Children being exposed to poor child-rearing before the separation might be affected more than those brought up well. Other factors could be alcoholism, lack of intimacy from mother, and criminality within the household.
The most widely believed theory in relation to juvenile delinquency and broken homes is control theory. Control theory has four different elements that comprise to make a whole. Each element is a bond to society, when the bond is weak or broken then delinquent acts are the result. Through attachment, commitment, involvement and belief elements possibly a better society could prevail. The higher rates of delinquency are associated with children in disrupted families due to damaging effects of separation and divorce on attachment (Juby 24). Delinquent behavior in a broken home occurs because of the resentment built up between the parent and the child making the child less affectionate and communicative. The more attached one is to their parents the less likely they are to commit crimes, because the child does not want to let their parents down. Crime is viewed as a failure for the child, with a stronger sense of bonding the child wants to deviant away from crime. Commitment is the idea of a