The size of the familial unit has decreased over time, and the rise in marital terminations during the last century serves as one explanation behind this change (Emery, 1999). Close to the mid-1800's, there were approximately 5% first-marriage terminations (Preston & McDonald as cited by Amato, 2000), whereas it is estimated that roughly 50% of today's first marriages will terminate by choice (Cherlin as cited by Amato, 2000). There has been a controversial, continuous discussion about the effects of divorce/separation on both young people and adults (Amato, 2000). By reviewing available literature, I attempted to answer the question: Overall, does divorce negatively influence the lives of children, adolescents, and adults? Research has found associations between divorce and negative outcomes in individuals such as misconduct, smoking, alcohol and drug use, educational and professional attainment, relationship difficulties, problems with adjustment, psychosocial wellness, depression/anxiety, etc. However, the effects of divorce are different for everyone (Amato, 2000) and, consequently, not all individuals will have the same outcomes. Thus, this thesis also incorporates discussion of issues, including the various moderators of outcomes, as well as the role of familial/parental discord, and inherent attributes in experiencing negative effects. Apparently, the above query is not easily answered. Existing research highlights the fact that there are competing opinions on the issue, and studies on both sides of the argument have yielded compelling, yet conflicting results. As of yet, it does not seem as if any solid conclusions can be drawn on this subject matter. However, this uncertainty reinforces the need for further investigations in this area.