[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In a sample of 18-, 30-, and 42-month-olds, the relations among parenting, effortful control (EC), and maladjustment were examined. Parenting was assessed with mothers' reports and observations; EC was measured with mothers' and caregivers' reports, as well as a behavioral task; and externalizing and internalizing symptoms were assessed with parents' and caregivers' reports. Although 18-month unsupportive (vs. supportive) parenting negatively predicted EC at 30 months, when the stability of these variables was taken into account, there was no evidence of additional potentially causal relations between these two constructs. Although EC was negatively related to both internalizing and externalizing problems within all three ages as well as across 1 year, EC did not predict maladjustment once the stability of the constructs and within time covariation between the constructs were taken into account. In addition, externalizing problems at 30 months negatively predicted EC at 42 months, and internalizing problems at 30 months positively predicted EC at 42 months, but only when the effects of externalizing on EC were controlled. The findings are discussed in terms of the reasons for the lack of causal relations over time.
Development and Psychopathology 08/2010; 22(3):507-25. · 4.40 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The authors examined the relations of maternal supportive parenting to effortful control and internalizing problems (i.e., separation distress, inhibition to novelty), externalizing problems, and social competence when toddlers were 18 months old (n = 256) and a year later (n = 230). Mothers completed the Coping With Toddlers' Negative Emotions Scale, and their sensitivity and warmth were observed. Toddlers' effortful control was measured with a delay task and adults' reports (Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire). Toddlers' social functioning was assessed with the Infant/Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment. Within each age, children's regulation significantly mediated the relation between supportive parenting and low levels of externalizing problems and separation distress, and high social competence. When using stronger tests of mediation, controlling for stability over time, the authors found only partial evidence for mediation. The findings suggest these relations may be set at an early age.