Familial influence on runaway adolescents


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Purpose: The objective of this study was to formulate a more concise profile of the family of the runaway adolescent and its influence in regard to the runaway episode. This was accomplished by analyzing three general questions which were: (1) What is the relationship between family interaction and runaway behavior, (2) What is the relationship between runaway behavior and the behavior of runaway siblings, (3) What is the relationship between runaway behavior and the runaway's ordinal position within the family. Methods: Methods used in this study were as follows: (1) the formulation of a questionnaire which would investigate specific variables pertaining to three general questions, (2) the collection of data by the administration of the questionnaire to thirty subjects who had been categorized as runaways, (3) the analysis of the data by the computer at Sam Houston State University using a frequency distribution on each of the variables, (4) the interviewer's analysis of the frequency distributions in an attempt to locate variables with prominent percentages and to determine their relationship to the three general questions. Findings: Results were formulated, and subsequent analysis was presented in reference to the three questions. Results suggest the following: 1. The subject does seem to interact with his family and/or parents to some extent, yet meaningful activity is at a minimum. 2. Mobility was not found to be extensive among this sample. 3. Discipline within the family is ignored or lacking to some extent. 4. The broken home was not found to be evident in the majority of cases. 5. A large percentage of runaway siblings were older than the subjects. 6. In reference to the number of runaway incidents, number of days gone, reasons for leaving and returning, and with whom left and when, the characteristics of the subjects' runaway incidents were similar enough to the siblings' runaway incidents to suggest modeling. 7. The subjects were found not to occupy either extreme of the ordinal continuum, rather a large percentage occupied positions between these two extremes.



Runaway children--Texas--Ector County.