The purpose of the present research was to find out the emotional and behavioral problems among single parent Pakistani adolescents. After detailed review of literature it was hypothesized that;
1- The adolescents of single parent groups (due to Lack of physical presence, Separation, Divorce, and death) would have more depression, anxiety, and have more behavioral problems as compared to adolescents living with both parents group.
2- There will be a significant difference between male and female of both parent and single parent group on the variable of depression, anxiety and behavioral problem. Boys of single parent would have more emotional and behavior problems than the girls of single parent group.
3- There will be a significant difference between male and female of mother headed and father headed adolescents in single parent group.
4- The difference in sub-scales of emotional (Depression, Generalized anxiety, Separation anxiety, social anxiety, OCD and Fear of physical injury and harm) and behavioral problems (Emotional Scale, Conduct problem, Hyper activity, Peer problem, Pro-social scale and Violation of rules and smoking behavior) between single and both parent group as well as sub-scales are further analyzed within single parent group. Sample of the present research consists of 240 adolescents, 120 males and 120 females, ranging from 12 to 17 years of age. The distribution of sample is as follows; 60 adolescents from both parent group (30 males and 30 females). The death group had 60 adolescents (30 males and 30 females) the other Sub-categories of single parent groups comprise of 40 adolescents (20 males and 20 females). In all the sub-categories were further divided into father headed and mother headed groups.
Revised Child Anxiety and Depression Scale (RCADS), Strength and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) and, a short Demographic Information Form were used to assess emotional and behavioral problems and to gather information regarding sodo-economic values.
T-test and analysis of variance was applied to determine the differences between the various sub-categories of the sample.
The results showed the significant differences between adolescents living with both parent and single parent groups on the variable of depression, anxiety and behavioral problem. Also a significant difference is found between male and female adolescents of single and both parent groups. There is an insignificant difference between male and female of lack of physical presence and separation group, on the variable anxiety, depression and behavioral problem. Insignificant difference is also found in behavioral problems of divorce group, and anxiety in death group. There is a significant difference between male and female of father headed and mother headed single parent groups. The only insignificant difference is found on the variable of behavioral problem between male and female of mother headed single parent group. Results in sub-scales of emotional problems indicate depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder is higher in lack of physical presence group. Generalized anxiety, social anxiety and Fear of physical harm and injury are higher in separation group. Separation anxiety is higher in divorced group. Results in sub-scales of behavioral problems indicate that peer problem, low pro-social activities and violation of rules and smoking behavior are higher in separation group. Emotional scale and hyper-activity is higher in lack of physical presence group. Conduct problem is higher in death group. It is concluded that single parenting results in emotional and behavioral problems, though the nature of the problem may differ in different type of situations.