The fatherhood experience of divorced custodial fathers in Israel

Orna Cohen, Ricky Finzi-Dottan, Gali Tangir-Dotan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This qualitative study examines the fatherhood experience of 20 divorced men who are raising children on their own. The findings were gathered from semistructured in-depth interviews. The interviewees' depictions revealed a process of making place for oneself in a multiparticipant arena facing social systems, the mother of the children, and the children themselves. The main findings concern the circumstances of single fatherhood: a constraint and a choice stemming from the mother's incapacity, the nature of the relationships created between mother and children and between father and mother, and the burden and pleasure contained within single parenthood. The discussion looks at the findings through the prism of Baxter and Montgomery's (1996) dialectic theory. It sheds light on the ongoing, contrast-filled process of establishing a perception of fatherhood, and the experiences of divorced fathers raising their children on their own.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)639-653
Number of pages15
JournalFamily Relations
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 National Council on Family Relations.


  • Co-parenting
  • Custodial fathers
  • Divorce
  • Father-child relations
  • Paternal practice


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