Research & Policy Digest / by Mark Weber

OnePlusOne’s monthly roundup of the key research and policy news to emerge from the field of relationships, including the latest journal articles of interest to family and relationships practitioners and researchers.

Research and statistics

Foundations for Life: What Works to Support Parent Child Interaction in the Early Years
Early Intervention Foundation

Foundations for Life: What Works to Support Parent Child Interaction in the Early Years” is an assessment by the Early Intervention Foundation of 75 early intervention programmes aimed at improving child outcomes through positive parent child interactions in the early years. This report has assessed programmes available to UK commissioners, rather than considering programmes from around the world.  This is also the first time that EIF have used their own robust methods for rating the evidence and costs of early intervention programmes.

Falling short: the experiences of families below the Minimum Income Standard
Joseph Rowntree Foundation

More than one in three families in the UK now have incomes below the Minimum Income Standard (MIS), a benchmark based on what the public agrees a household needs as a minimum to live on. Their incomes are reckoned to be too low to allow the choices and opportunities required to participate fully in society. This report considers how families need stability, but this is undermined by irregular employment and hours. It also considers changes in benefits and tax credits, insecurity in private rented housing and how the stress of trying to keep on top of finances is emotionally draining and often causes parents to prioritise meeting their children’s needs and sacrifice their own. This study comprised in-depth interviews with 30 families on low incomes. A mix of lone parents and couples, in and out of work, were interviewed.

Running randomised controlled trials in innovation, entrepreneurship and growth

This introductory guide from Nesta has been created to help policy-makers, researchers and practitioners in the field of innovation, entrepreneurship and growth understand why, when and how to do a randomised controlled trial (RCT). It aims to enable readers to acquire the basic knowledge needed to understand RCTs, to understand what type of trial is best suited to address your research questions, to understand some of the challenges that may be facedin the implementation stage, and to equip you with knowledge on how to best approach analysis and reporting of RCTs.

Population estimates by marital status and living arrangements, England and Wales: 2002 to 2015

This statistical bulletin from the Office of National Statistics presents population estimates by legal marital status and cohabitation status by age and sex for England and Wales from 2002 to 2015. Figures show that there were 23.8 million people who were married in 2015, which was 50.6% of the population aged 16 and over. However, marriage rates have steadily declined since 2002, which could be associated with a rise in cohabiting amongst those who have never married or formed a civil partnership.

Policy and practice

Including Fathers
Family Nurse Partnership National Unit

This blog from the Family Nurse Partnership National Unit looks at what health practitioners do to engage, work with and support fathers. It also touches on relevant research and what it says about the importance of fathers in a child’s life. In this case father may refer to a biological father and/or step father/father figure.

Tuning into the sexual histories and lives of older adults blog

This guest blog is from Dr Paul Willis, senior lecturer in social work with adults in the School for Policy Studies at the University of Bristol. This blog outlines how sex and sexuality are difficult topics to discuss with service users and carers, and even more so with older adults. Dr Willis’ research and recommendations concern attitudes and approaches to the sexual health and wellbeing of older adults.

Best start in life: Promoting good emotional wellbeing and mental health for children and young people
Local Government Association

Children and young people’s mental health services and social care can help to pick up the pieces when things go wrong. But it is councils and their partners who can play a lead role in trying to ensure problems don’t develop in the first place. This briefing from the Local Government Association contains examples of councils that are looking at innovative ways to provide support with a focus on children and families rather than static services, as well as more information about the scale of the problem and what steps can be taken.

Journal articles

The effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions in the perinatal period: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Lever Taylor et al. (2016). PLOSone.

Nonmarital First Births, Marriage, and Income Inequality.
Cherlin et al. (2016). American Sociological Review.

Child Adjustment in Joint Physical Custody Versus Sole Custody: A Meta-Analytic Review.
Baude et al. (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

Promoting Coparenting After Divorce: A Relational Perspective on Child Custody Evaluations in Italy.
Ranieri et al. (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

Conceptualizations of Divorced Fathers and Interventions to Support Involvement.
Troilo (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

The effect of daily challenges in children with autism on parents’ couple problem-solving interactions.
Hartley et al. (2016). Journal of Family Psychology.

Parenting Stress Among Low-Income and Working-Class Fathers: The Role of Employment.
Nomaguchi and Johnson (2016). Journal of Family Issues.

The green-eyed monster: Mate value, relational uncertainty, and jealousy in romantic relationships.
Redlick (2016). Personal Relationships.

Romantic and dating behaviors among single parents in the United States.
Gray et al. (2016). Personal Relationships.

The impact of couple therapy on service utilization among military veterans: The moderating roles of pretreatment service utilization and premature termination.
Madsen et al. (2016). Family Process.

Why we chose to stay together: Qualitative interviews with separated couples who chose to reconcile.
Pearce Plauche et al. (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

Abilities in romantic relationships and well-being among emerging adults.
Weisskirch (2016). Marriage and Family Review.

Spousal conflict resolution strategies and marital relations in late adulthood.
Kulik et al. (2016). Personal Relationships.

Is marriage a buzzkill? A twin study of marital status and alcohol consumption.
Dinescu et al. (2016). Journal of Family Psychology.

Illuminating the context and circumstances of male couples establishing a sexual agreement in their relationship.
Mitchell et al. (2016). American Journal of Men’s Health.

The rested relationship: Sleep benefits marital evaluations.
Maranges and McNulty (2016). Journal of Family Psychology.

Couples Therapy for Intimate Partner Violence: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Karakurt et al. (2016). Journal of Martial and Family Therapy.

At-home father families in the united states: Gender ideology, human capital, and unemployment.
Kramer and Kramer (2016). Journal of Marriage and Family. 

Ideas about childbearing among childless men.
Jensen (2016). Families, Relationships and Societies. 

The experience of co-residence: young adults returning to the parental home after graduation in England.
Lewis et al. (2016). Families, Relationships and Societies. 

From roaring on the hilltop to weeping by the bedside: protector personas of fathers raising children with autism spectrum disorder.
Lashewicz et al. (2016). Families, Relationships and Societies.

Tough love: The behavior control justice motive facilitates forgiveness in valued relationships.
Strelan et al. (2016). Personal Relationships.

Shifting expectations of partners’ responsiveness changes outcomes of conflict discussions.
Marigold and Anderson (2016). Personal Relationships.

Relationship satisfaction of the previously married: The significance of relationship specific costs and rewards in first and repartnering unions.
Ivanova (2016). Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 

Dyadic perspectives on marital quality and loneliness in later life.
Moorman (2016). Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

“It’s not just words coming from the mouth”: The nature of compassionate love among older couples.
Sabey et al. (2016). Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

Spouse cancer caregivers’ burden and distress at entry to home hospice: The role of relationship quality.
Reblin et al. (2016). Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

Young adult females’ relationship work and its links to romantic functioning and stability over time.
Jensen and Rauer (2016). Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

First-time parents’ prenatal needs for early parenthood preparation-A systematic review and meta-synthesis of qualitative literature.
Enstsieh and Hallstrom (2016). Midwifery.

Child behavior problems: Mothers’ and fathers’ mental health matters today and tomorrow.
Vallotton et al. (2016). Early Childhood Research Quarterly.

Gender-typed behavior over time in children with lesbian, gay, and heterosexual parents.
Goldberg et al. (2016). Journal of Family Psychology.

Why still marry? The role of feelings in the persistence of marriage as an institution.
Billari and Liefbroer (2016). The British Journal of Sociology.

Gay guys using gay language: friendship, shared values and the intent-context-effect matrix.
McCormack et al. (2016). The British Journal of Sociology.

Qualities of knowledge brokers: Reflections from practice.
Phipps and Morton (2016). The Policy Press.

Women’s maternal experiences in Canadian stepfamilies: An exploratory study.
Gosselin and Gosselin (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

Understanding single mothers’ parenting stress trajectories.
Berryhill and Durtschi (2016). Marriage and Family Review.

Midwifery-led antenatal care models: mapping a systematic review to an evidence-based quality framework to identify key components and characteristics of care.
Symon et al. (2016). Implementation Science.

The use and value of digital media for information about pregnancy and early motherhood: a focus group study.
Lupton (2016). Implementation Science.

Health behavior among men with multiple family roles: the moderating effects of perceived partner relationship quality.
De Pasquale et al. (2016). American Journal of Men’s Health.

Emotional mechanisms linking incivility at work to aggression and withdrawal at home: An experience-sampling study.
Lim et al. (2016). Journal of Management.

The aftermath of divorce: Postdivorce adjustment strategies of South Asian, Black, and White women in the United States.
Lawson and Satti (2016). Journal of Divorce and Remarriage.

Associations between prior deployments and marital satisfaction among army couples.
Karney and Trail (2016). Journal of Marriage and Family.

Social network typologies of black and white married couples in midlife.
Fiori et al. (2016). Journal of Marriage and Family.

Intimately connected: The importance of partner responsiveness for experiencing sexual desire.
Birnbaum et al. (2016). Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.