Family Relations

Published by Wiley
Online ISSN: 1741-3729
Print ISSN: 0197-6664
This study examined the intergenerational transmission of abuse among a sample of 681 teen, adult low, and adult high resource first-time mothers. Participants ranged in age from 14 to 36 years, with a mean of 20 years. Exposure to childhood emotional and physical abuse was associated with 6-month parenting behavior; but not parenting knowledge. Teen mothers, as opposed to adult mothers, had higher mean scores for exposure to childhood emotional and physical abuse. Adult high resource mothers reported lower mean scores on each abuse outcome than both teen and adult low resource mothers. For the total sample of mothers, as past exposure to emotional and physical abuse increased, maternal responsivity decreased, and opinions towards, and propensities for, abusive behavior increased.
Theoretical Model of Discrimination and Social Support as Predictors of Academic Well-Being for Latino Youth. Hypothesis 1: Expected Negative Effect of Discrimination on Academic Well-being. Hypothesis 2: Expected Positive “Main Effects” Social Support Model. Hypothesis 3: Expected Moderating “Buffering Effects” Social Support Model. Hypothesis 4: Expected Differential “Provider Effects” Model.
Structural Equation Modeling Path Model Testing the Main Effects of Discrimination and Social Support on Academic Well-Being for Latino youth, χ2(43) = 85.34, p= .00; comparative fit index = .99, χ2/df= 1.98.
Bivariate Correlations of Support and Academic Well-Being Indicators for Latino Youth Youth Reported Source of Support (n = 278)
This study tested a culturally informed model of academic well-being for 278 Latino youth. We examined detrimental effects of discriminatory experiences and protective effects of social support on self-reported academic outcomes. Models specified main and buffering effects of social support and compared contributions of support provided by parents, school, and peers. Data indicated that discrimination was associated with lower academic well-being, social support buffered effects of discrimination on academic well-being, and parental support was most predictive of greater academic well-being. Combined sources of social support were more important than any one source alone. Implications for culturally specified research, preventive interventions, and practitioners are discussed.
Using survey data from a western U.S. county (N = 595), we examined how lower, middle, and higher income families negotiate a period of economic stress-the closing of a major employer in the community-through their shopping patterns. Specifically, we examined their participation in local thrift economies such as yard sales and secondhand stores. We found that lower and middle income households shop more frequently at these venues. They also tend to shop more for furniture and clothing, whereas higher income households tend to shop for antiques and trinkets. These relationships varied across the type of thrift economy examined. Overall, findings support the argument that engagement in thrift economies may constitute one mechanism families use during periods of economic stress.
An adaptation of the Family Stress Model was examined using structural equation modeling with data from 193 custodial grandmother-grandfather dyads. The model's measurement and structural components were largely invariant by grandparent gender. For grandmothers and grandfathers alike, the effects of their psychological and marital distress on grandchildren's adjustment difficulties were mediated by dysfunctional parenting. The effects of family-related contextual forces on grandchildren's adjustment were also indirect through direct effects on grandparents' psychological and marital distress.
One hundred ten Mexican American adolescents (12 - 17 years) who provide infant care for their older sisters were studied to determine the effects of family caregiving responsibilities on adolescents' adjustment. Controlling for prior adjustment and family context factors, providing many hours of caregiving predicted an increase in youths' school absences and disciplinary problems. Frequent conflict surrounding caregiving was associated with increased stress and depression and lower school grades. Older girls appear to select into caregiving and experience the most problematic outcomes. Strong family obligations were not protective against caregiving stress but, rather, further compromised youths' well-being for those who were highly involved in their family's care.
Differences in Parents' Time with Older (sibO) versus Younger (sibY) Siblings as a Function of Parent Gender and Adolescent Gender and Birth Order.Note: Bars represent parents' time with younger siblings subtracted from parents' time with older siblings such that higher scores reflect relatively more time with younger siblings.
Using multi-informant data from 134 two-parent African American families, the goals of this study were to (a) describe parent - adolescent warmth and shared time as a function of parent and youth gender and (b) assess links between these indices of relationship quality and adolescent adjustment. Mixed-model ANCOVAs revealed that mothers reported warmer relationships with adolescents than fathers, and both parents reported warmer relationships with younger versus older offspring. Interparental differences in time spent with sons and daughters and older and younger siblings were also found. Tests of multilevel models indicated that greater maternal warmth was associated with fewer depressive symptoms and less risky behavior for sons, and more paternal warmth and shared time with fathers were associated with less risky behavior in youth. Discussion highlights the utility of cultural ecological and family systems perspectives for understanding parent-adolescent relationships and youth adjustment in African American families.
The present study uses observational assessment of 66 two-parent families working and playing together when their eldest child is in kindergarten and again in 9(th) grade to identify distinct patterns of family functioning derived from structural family systems theory. Whereas concurrent assessment of the relationship between family type and adolescents' school behavior were not significant, significant prospective longitudinal relationships between family type assessed in early childhood and 9(th) grade school behavior were indicated. Kindergarteners whose families were primarily characterized by a strong mother-child alliance were less academically competent, more aggressive/inattentive, and more anxious/depressed/withdrawn at school nine years later when they were in 9(th) grade, than their peers in more cohesive or father-child allied families.
The efficacy of a computer-based intervention to increase parent-adolescent communication among Latino parents and adolescents was tested in a randomized controlled trial. Parents assigned to receive the 2-session intervention reported greater general communication, sexual communication, and comfort with communication at 3 month follow-up than did parents assigned to the wait-list control condition. Adolescents, whose parents received the intervention, reported higher sexual communication than did adolescents whose parents were in the wait-list control condition. Results provide support for the efficacy of brief parent interventions designed to maximize adolescent support systems. The acceptability of the computer-based format for an underserved population provides an important venue for the delivery and use of health information.
This study investigated associations between sibling relationships and adjustment among 179 African American adolescent siblings (controlling for family factors), and tested moderating effects of familism values and birth order. Two-level random intercept models revealed that familism values moderated sibling relationship-adjustment linkages, suggesting that youth who reported both strong familism values and harmonious sibling relationships showed the most positive outcomes. These effects were more consistent for older than for younger siblings. Findings highlight the role of cultural values and birth order in shaping sibling influence processes.
The goals of this study were to examine longitudinal changes in perceived control in adolescents' sibling relationships and to describe the nature and correlates of three distinct control patterns: Firstborn dominant, equal, and secondborn dominant. Firstborn and secondborn adolescents in 184 predominately European-American families participated in home interviews and a series of phone interviews as part of a longitudinal a study of family relationships and adolescent development. Findings revealed changes in control over three years as well as sibling differences. In addition, different patterns of control were linked to qualities of the sibling relationship and to adolescent adjustment. The different roles that firstborn and secondborn siblings assume, and why these roles are linked to relationship experiences and adjustment, are discussed.
The psychological well-being of fathers of children with developmental disabilities remains poorly understood. The present study examined depressive symptoms, pessimism, and coping in fathers of adolescents and young adults with Down syndrome (DS; n = 59), autism spectrum disorders (ASDs; n = 135), and fragile X syndrome (FXS; n = 46) Fathers of sons/daughters with ASDs reported a higher level of depressive symptoms than the other groups of fathers. Fathers of sons/daughters with DS reported a lower level of pessimism than the other groups of fathers. There were no group differences in paternal coping style. Group differences in paternal depressive symptoms and pessimism were, in part, related to differences in paternal age, the child's behavior problems, risk of having additional children with a disability, and maternal depressive symptoms. Findings from this study can be used to educate providers and design services for fathers during the later parenting years.
In seeking to adopt, lesbians and gay men may confront various barriers and obstacles. Ideally they have access to a variety of support resources that can help to buffer the negative effects of these barriers. However, lesbians and gay men living in small-metropolitan communities may have limited access to support resources. The current qualitative study examined the perceptions of 37 same-sex couples who were pursuing adoption while living outside of large metropolitan cities, with attention to the barriers these couples encountered during the adoption process, and the resources they drew upon to cope with such challenges. Findings indicated that same sex couples living in small-metropolitan areas confronted several major barriers in the adoption process, such as a lack of geographically accessible gay-friendly adoption agencies. Despite limited access to support, participants showed evidence of notable resourcefulness. For example, participants with limited access to formal support groups sought out informal supports instead.
Hypotheses Regarding the Influence of Parenting and Intimate Relationship Processes on Consistent Condom Use Among African American Women.
Mediational Model. Note: *p < .05. **p < .01.
Sexually transmitted infections disproportionately affect African Americans, particularly young women. The influence of a set of interrelated protective parenting processes-instrumental and emotional support, sexual risk communication, and encouragement of goals for employment or education-on emerging adult women was examined. Parenting was hypothesized to affect consistent condom use through its association with women's reports of power equity in their intimate relationships. Hypotheses were tested with 135 sexually active women 18 to 21 years of age living in rural southern communities. Structural equation modeling indicated that (a) parenting processes predicted women's self-reported relationship power equity and consistent condom use, and (b) relationship power equity predicted consistent condom use. Limited support emerged for a mediational role of relationship power equity in explaining the influence of parenting on consistent condom use. Parental involvement and young women's establishment of personal control in their intimate relationships are important goals for sexual risk reduction programs.
This study examined the effects of work schedule flexibility and the spillover of work stress to family life on the health of parents of adult children with serious mental illness (SMI). We compared 100 parents of adult children with SMI to 500 parents with nondisabled adult children using data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study. The detrimental impact on health of a lack of work flexibility and of higher levels of negative work-to-family spillover were more pronounced among parents of adult children with SMI than parents with non-disabled adult children. The results have significant implications for developing interventions to help midlife families of persons with SMI cope with work-related stress and for policies that provide for greater work schedule flexibility.
This investigation of the effects of stressful life events on rural African American women's relationship well-being, psychological functioning, and parenting included 361 married or long-term cohabiting women. Associations among stressful events, socioeconomic status, perceived racial discrimination, coping strategies, psychological functioning, relationship well-being, and parenting were tested. Stressful events were related directly to diminished relationship well-being and heightened psychological distress and indirectly to compromised parenting. The results can inform research and intervention with African American women.
This study examines the correlates of marital satisfaction using data from a national probability sample of African Americans (N = 962) and Black Caribbeans (N = 560). Findings reveal differences between African Americans and Black Caribbeans, and men and women within those groups, in the predictors of marital satisfaction. Black Caribbean women reported overall higher levels of marital satisfaction than African American women. The findings amply demonstrate the significance of ethnic diversity within the Black population in the United States. Difficulties with finances (budgeting, credit issues, and debt management) are one of the key issues that generate conflict in marriages; stress generated as a result of financial problems can lower marital satisfaction. Because these issues are salient for couples at any given time in the family life cycle, counseling at critical points in the marriage (birth of children, launching of children from home, and retirement) may be helpful.
This study investigated the correlates of relationship satisfaction, marriage expectations, and relationship longevity among unmarried African American and Black Caribbean (Caribbean Black) adults who are in a romantic relationship. The study used data from the National Survey of American Life, a national representative sample of African Americans and Caribbean Blacks in the United States. The findings indicated that the correlates of relationship satisfaction, expectations of marriage, and relationship longevity were different for African Americans and Black Caribbeans. For Black Caribbeans, indicators of socioeconomic status were particularly important correlates of relationship satisfaction. For African Americans, indicators of parental status were important for relationship longevity. Policy and practice implications for nonmarital unions are discussed.
Similarities and differences in predictors of retention/attendance patterns between African American and Hispanic parent participants (N = 143) from a family-focused preventive intervention were examined. Three broad retention pattern groups, nonattenders, variable attenders, and consistent high attenders, and 2 subgroups of the variable attendance group, decreasing low attenders and decreasing high attenders, were identified. In subgroup analyses, 3 significant discriminant functions were evident: 1 function classified Hispanic parents' retention patterns using sociodemographic indicators (e.g., educational attainment, household income) and 2 functions discriminated Hispanic and African American parents' patterns using family-level predictors (e.g., multiple caregivers attending the intervention, perceived barriers to participation). Implications are discussed in terms of strategies for improving methods of retaining participants in family-centered interventions conducted with ethnic minority families.
Using prospective data from 370 middle-aged husbands and wives during a 12-year period, we investigated the intra-individual and dyadic influence of family economic hardship on the levels of depressive symptoms of husbands and wives over their middle years. The results suggest that family economic hardship during the early middle years contributes to subsequent increase in depressive symptoms of husbands and wives after controlling for family economic hardship in late middle years. Consistent with stress-process theory, economic hardship influences depressive symptoms directly and indirectly through its influence on self-esteem. The results also provided evidence for the scar hypothesis which suggests that depression predicts subsequent level of self-esteem and form a reciprocal process between depressive symptoms and self-esteem over time. In sum, for both husbands and wives, our findings showed that depressive symptoms progress over the middle years through a self-perpetuating reciprocal process between self-esteem and depression initiated by early family economic hardship and through cross-spouse influences involving self-esteem and depressive symptoms.
This article explores perceptions of privacy in AIDS testing from a systemic perspective. Ii is hypothesized that individuals will create boundaries based on desire to disclose information about results of AIDS testing. Results suggest individuals delineate clear boundaries for the dissemination of information concerning AIDS testing, with the target of information being a significant determinant of amount of disclosure. Implications for therapists, family life educators, and policymakers are discussed.
We examined correlates of sources of parental knowledge of youths' experiences in Mexican American families, including child self-disclosure, parental solicitation, spouse, siblings, and individuals outside the family. Home and phone interviews were conducted with mothers, fathers, and their seventh-grade male and female offspring in 246 Mexican American families. Results indicated that mothers and fathers relied on different sources of knowledge; parent-child relationship quality and cultural orientations predicted parents' sources of knowledge; and different sources had different implications for youth adjustment. Specifically, child disclosure to mothers and fathers' reliance on their spouse were consistently linked to better youth outcomes. Moderation analyses revealed that correlates of parents' knowledge sources were not always uniform across mothers and fathers or daughters and sons.
This study explored the association between household financial arrangements and relationship quality using a representative sample of low-income couples with children. We detailed the banking arrangements couples utilize, assessed which factors relate to holding a joint account versus joint and separate, only separate, or no account, and analyzed the association between fiscal practices and men's and women's relationship quality. The majority of couples held joint accounts, though over one-quarter also have separate accounts; nearly one-tenth have no account. Joint bank accounts were associated with higher levels of relationship quality on numerous dimensions, though more consistently for women than men. Individualistic arrangements appeared to undermine women's relationship satisfaction and reduce feelings of intimacy, sexual compatibility, and satisfaction with conflict resolution.
The current study examined associations over an 18-month period between maternal work stressors, negative work-family spillover, and depressive symptoms in a sample of 414 employed mothers with young children living in six predominantly nonmetropolitan counties in the Eastern United States. Results from a one-group mediation model revealed that a less flexible work environment and greater work pressure predicted higher levels of depressive symptoms, and further, that these associations were mediated by perceptions of negative work-family spillover. Additionally, results from a two-group mediation model suggested that work pressure predicted greater perceptions of spillover only for mothers employed full-time. Findings suggest the need for policies that reduce levels of work stress and help mothers manage their work and family responsibilities.
Overview of Parenting Interventions for Drug Using Mothers
Maternal substance abuse is the most common factor involved when children come to the attention of the child welfare system. Although there is a clear need for clinical trials to evaluate parenting interventions for drug-dependent women, few studies to date have systematically examined the efficacy of interventions for this population. We first review six published reports of outpatient interventions that aimed to enhance the caregiving skills of substance-abusing mothers caring for children between birth and 5 years of age. After discussing implications of these preliminary studies, we then describe an attachment-based intervention that addresses these implications and has demonstrated preliminary feasibility in a pilot trial.
Research suggests that corporal punishment is related to higher levels of child externalizing behavior, but there has been controversy regarding whether infrequent, mild spanking predicts child externalizing or whether more severe and frequent forms of corporal punishment account for the link. Mothers rated the frequency with which they spanked and whether they spanked with a hand or object when their child was 6, 7, and 8 years old. Mothers and teachers rated children's externalizing behaviors at each age. Analyses of covariance revealed higher levels of mother-reported externalizing behavior for children who experienced harsh spanking. Structural equation models for children who experienced no spanking or mild spanking only revealed that spanking was related to concurrent and prior, but not subsequent, externalizing. Mild spanking in one year was a risk factor for harsh spanking in the next year. Findings are discussed in the context of efforts to promote children's rights to protection.
Corporal punishment (CP) remains highly prevalent in the U.S. despite its association with increased risk for child aggression and physical abuse. Five focus groups were conducted with parents (n=18) from a community at particularly high risk for using CP (Black, low socioeconomic status, Southern) in order to investigate their perceptions about why CP use is so common. A systematic qualitative analysis was conducted using grounded theory techniques within an overall thematic analysis. Codes were collapsed and two broad themes emerged. CP was perceived to be: 1) instrumental in achieving parenting goals and 2) normative within participants' key social identity groups, including race/ethnicity, religion, and family of origin. Implications for the reduction of CP are discussed using a social ecological framework.
A stress-buffering hypothesis for parenting was tested in a county-representative sample of 218 divorced fathers. Social support for parenting (emergency and nonemergency child care, practical support, financial support) was hypothesized to moderate effects of stress (role overload, coparental conflict, and daily hassles) on fathers' quality parenting. No custody fathers relied more on relatives compared with custodial fathers, who relied more on new partners for parenting support. No differences by custody status were found on levels of support or parenting over time. Parenting support buffered effects of change in role overload and coparenting conflict on coercive parenting and buffered effects of change in daily hassles on prosocial parenting. Buffer effects were more predictive over time. Implications for practice and preventive intervention strategies are discussed.
Parental incarceration can be devastating for families. Children may experience difficulties, and the stress on caregivers who take on unexpected childrearing is high. We implemented and evaluated a family-level intervention with caregivers and children experiencing parental (typically maternal) incarceration, in a community setting. We partnered with a community-based organization serving families with an incarcerated parent to conduct a pilot trial of the Strengthening Families Program (SFP). Process evaluation indicated high implementation fidelity, satisfaction, engagement, and attendance. Outcome evaluation results indicated positive changes in family-level functioning, caregivers' positive parenting, and caregiver depression symptoms from pre- to post-intervention, with some changes retained at follow-up 4 months later. Implications for preventive interventions with children of incarcerated parents, and their caregivers, are discussed.
Using data from the 2004 wave of the National Long-Term Care Survey, we examined how negative and positive caregiving experiences differ by caregivers' gender and relationship to care recipients. We further considered how their caregiving experiences are affected by caregivers' demographic characteristics, care recipients' problem behavior and dependency, caregivers' involvement, reciprocal help from care recipients, and social support available for caregivers. We found that female and adult-child caregivers, in general, reported having had more negative experiences than male and spouse caregivers, respectively. Wife caregivers were least likely to report positive experiences. We also found different risk factors for negative and positive caregiving experiences, and these factors varied depending on caregivers' gender and relationship to the care recipient. The findings underscore the heterogeneity of caregiving experiences. To sustain informal care, state and local agencies need to tailor services to wife, husband, daughter, and son caregivers' unique needs.
Community-based participatory research (CBPR) is an action research approach that emphasizes collaborative partnerships between community members, community organizations, health care providers, and researchers to generate knowledge and solve local problems. Although relatively new to the field of family social science, family and health researchers have been using CBPR for over a decade. This paper will introduce CBPR methods, illustrate the usefulness of CBPR methods in families and health research, describe two CBPR projects related to diabetes, and conclude with lessons learned and strengths and weaknesses of CBPR.
Although the barriers to couples' help seeking can be daunting, to date there is only a small body of literature addressing the factors that motivate couples to seek help. This study examined the association between attitudes towards relationship help seeking and relationship help seeking behaviors, as well as the association between marital quality and help seeking. This study was completed in the context of the Marriage Checkup, a brief intervention designed to reduce the barriers to help seeking. Results indicated that help seeking attitudes and behaviors were not related in couples, and that wives' marital quality was negatively associated with both wives' and husbands' help seeking. Husbands' marital quality was not associated with husbands' help seeking. Overall, this suggests that the process of couples' help seeking is distinct from that of individuals, and seems to be driven primarily by the female partner. Further implications for theory and treatment are discussed.
The study investigated family support as a buffer of stress in 153 mothers and preterm toddlers. Data were collected regarding maternal depressive symptoms, parenting stress, and family support; infant health; and videotaped mother-child interactions. Although more parenting stress related to less optimal child play, only information support functioned as a protective factor. Information support predicted positive play under high, but not low, maternal stress. Mothers of multiples reported more parenting stress than mothers of singletons.
The roles of the state, the parent, the United States Supreme Court, and the child in the decision-making process relating to the medical treatment of minor children are outlined and analyzed. Specific cases are examined. As a result of the analyses, it is recommended that the United States Supreme Court make further statements about the rights of children only after careful reconsideration of recent decisions.
This study examines the long-term effects of child death on bereaved parents' health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Using data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, we compared 233 bereaved couples and 229 comparison couples (mean age = 65.11 years) and examined the life course effects of child death on parents' HRQoL. Variations in bereavement effects were examined by gender and for different causes of death. Bereaved parents had significantly worse HRQoL than comparison group parents, and there was no evidence of gender differences for this effect. With respect to the cause of a child's death, bereaved parents whose child died in violent circumstances had particularly low levels of HRQoL. Multilevel models indicated that marital closeness mitigated the negative effects of bereavement.
=Sources of differentials in out-of-school learning time between children in first marriage biological parent families and children in six nontraditional family types are identified. Analyses of time diaries reveal that children in four of the six nontraditional family types spend fewer minutes learning than do children in first marriage biological parent families. In all four cases, however, the differentials are explained by the presence of siblings age 18+, lower levels of family income, or younger maternal age.
We investigated children and families who were participating in a mentoring program targeting children with incarcerated parents. Using multiple methods and informants, we explored the development of the mentoring relationship, challenges and benefits of mentoring children with incarcerated parents, and match termination in 57 mentor-child dyads. More than one-third of matches terminated during the first 6 months of participation. For those matches that continued to meet, however, children who saw their mentors more frequently exhibited fewer internalizing and externalizing symptoms. In monthly interviews with participants, themes emerged about challenges associated with mentoring and reasons for match termination. Implications for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers are discussed.
We explore dyadic parenting styles and their association with first-grade children's externalizing behavior symptoms in a sample of 85 working-class, dual-earner families. Cluster analysis is used to create a typology of parenting types, reflecting the parental warmth, overreactivity, and laxness of both mothers and fathers in two-parent families. Three distinct groups emerged: Supportive Parents, Mixed-Support Parents and Unsupportive Parents. Results indicate that dyadic parenting styles were related to teacher-reported externalizing symptoms for boys but not for girls.
Investigating children's outdoor play unites scholarship on neighborhoods, parental perceptions of safety, and children's health. Utilizing the Fragile Families and Child Well-being Study (N=3,448), we examine mothers' fear of their five-year-old children playing outdoors, testing associations with neighborhood social characteristics, city-level crime rates, maternal mental health, and social support. Living in public housing, perceptions of low neighborhood collective efficacy, and living in a Census tract with a higher proportion of Blacks and households in poverty are associated with higher odds of maternal fear, but crime rates are not a significant predictor of fear. We also demonstrate that not being depressed - but not social support or collective efficacy - buffers the influence of neighborhood poverty on maternal fears of outdoor play.
Despite the burgeoning cohabitation literature, research has failed to examine social class variation in processes of forming and advancing such unions. Drawing upon in-depth interviews with 122 working- and middle-class cohabitors, we examine the duration between dating and moving in together, reasons for cohabiting, and subsequent plans. Transitions to cohabitation are more rapid among the working class. Respondents often cohabited for practical reasons-out of financial necessity, because it was convenient, or to meet a housing need. Regardless of social class status, few couples move in together as a "trial marriage." Nonetheless, middle-class cohabitors were more likely to have become engaged than their working-class counterparts. Our findings indicate the need to reassess common beliefs regarding the role served by cohabitation and suggest that cohabitation has become another location where family outcomes are diverging by social class.
Young Americans increasingly express apprehension about their ability to successfully manage intimate relationships. Partially in response, cohabitation has become normative over the past few decades. Little research, however, examines social class distinctions in how emerging adults perceive challenges to sustaining intimate unions. We examine cohabitors' views of divorce and how these color their sentiments regarding marriage. Data are from in-depth interviews with 122 working- and middle-class cohabitors. More than two thirds of respondents mentioned concerns with divorce. Working-class women, in particular, view marriage less favorably than do their male and middle-class counterparts, in part because they see marriage as hard to exit and are reluctant to assume restrictive gender roles. Middle-class cohabitors are more likely to have concrete wedding plans and believe that marriage signifies a greater commitment than does cohabitation. These differences in views of marriage and divorce may help explain the bifurcation of cohabitation outcomes among working- and middle-class cohabitors.
Because scientific understanding of communicating family research to policymakers is incomplete, qualitative interviews were conducted with social scientists experienced in bridging the gulf between research and family policy. In keeping with the tenets of two communities and community dissonance theories, the underutilization of research in policymaking was attributed, in part, to misperceptions and miscommunication between researchers and policymakers who operate in different cultures. Social scientists identified cultural barriers they encountered and rewards they experienced when communicating research to policymakers. Ten recommendations detail pragmatic strategies for communicating across conflicting cultures to promote greater use of research in family policy decisions. The findings suggest a paradigm shift away from simply disseminating research to policymakers and toward developing collaborative relationships with them.
We examined patterns and predictors of the perceived need, use, and unmet need for mental health services by custodial grandchildren within both the school-based and community-based delivery sectors. Data were self-reported by a national sample of 610 custodial grandmothers providing full-time care to grandchildren ages 6 to 17 in the absence of biological parents. Although overlapping use of services across both sectors was common, the overall use of school-based services (51%) was higher than that of community-based services (37%). Using theAndersen Social and Behavioral Model (1995) the following shared predictors of mental health service use across both sectors by custodial grand-families emerged: grandchildren's externalizing symptoms, having other grandchildren in the household with medical or psychiatric diagnoses and corresponding use of services in the other sector. Predictors were largely the same regardless of whether analyses were conducted with families recruited by probability or convenience based sampling methods. Findings suggest the necessity to coordinate and integrate the availability and implementation of mental health services for custodial grandchildren across different delivery sectors.
Although disadvantaged women are the targets of marriage programs, little attention has been paid to women's marriage constraints and their views of marriage. Drawing on an exchange framework and using qualitative data collected from single women participating in a marriage initiative, we introduce the concept of marriageable women-the notion that certain limitations may make women poor marriage partners. Like their male counterparts, we find women also possess qualities that are not considered assets in the marriage market, such as economic constraints, mental and physical health issues, substance use, multiple partner fertility, and gender distrust. We also consider how women participating in a marriage program frame their marriage options, whereas a few opt out of the marriage market altogether.
Guided by a family stress perspective, we examined the hypothesis that discussing money would be associated with the handling of marital conflict in the home. Analyses were based on dyadic hierarchical linear modeling of 100 husbands' and 100 wives' diary reports of 748 conflict instances. Contrary to findings from previous laboratory-based surveys, spouses did not rate money as the most frequent source of marital conflict in the home. However, compared to non-money issues, marital conflicts about money were more pervasive, problematic, and recurrent, and remained unresolved, despite including more attempts at problem solving. Implications for professionals who assist couples in managing their relationships and family finances are discussed.
Driven by theory and extant research on the communication of emotions within the family, the current investigation examined marital quality and parents' emotional expressiveness as determinants of coparenting in a sample of 57 couples with young children. Specifically, mothers' and fathers' expressiveness was examined as moderators of the association between marital quality and coparenting behavior. Though negative expressiveness did not emerge as a significant predictor of coparenting when considered in conjunction with marital quality, parents' positive expressiveness made unique and interactive contributions to coparenting. Thus, it appears that positive expressiveness, especially fathers', may be beneficial to family functioning. Positively expressive husbands protected couples from negative coparenting interactions in the face of less supportive marriages. Couples in distressed marriages may benefit from work with practitioners and family life educators who consider the role that the communication of emotions plays in the context of coparenting.
This study investigated intimate partner violence in interracial and monoracial relationships. Using a nationally representative sample, regression analyses indicated that interracial couples demonstrated a higher level of mutual IPV than monoracial white couples but a level similar to monoracial black couples. There were significant gender differences in IPV, with women reporting lower levels of victimization than men. Regarding relationship status, cohabiting couples demonstrated the highest levels of IPV and dating couples reported the lowest levels. Regarding interactions among couple racial composition, relationship status, and respondents' gender, an interaction between racial composition and relationship status was found. Implications for practitioners and directions for future research are discussed.
We examined male partners' influence on the decision to seek medical help for infertility using from the National Survey of Fertility Barriers. Building upon an existing help-seeking framework, we incorporated characteristics of both partners from 219 heterosexual couples who had ever perceived a fertility problem. In logistic regression analyses, we found an association between couple-level attitudes and medical help-seeking even when other predisposing and enabling conditions existed. Overall, the findings highlight that both partners contribute to the infertility help-seeking process, and that different factors may play a role in different stages of help-seeking. Studies of infertility help-seeking need to be more inclusive of the context that these decisions are embedded within to better understand service use.
Top-cited authors
Alan J. Hawkins
  • Brigham Young University - Provo Main Campus
Edward Jeffrey Hill
  • Brigham Young University - Provo Main Campus
Jay A. Mancini
  • University of Georgia
Scott M Stanley
  • University of Denver
Ambika Krishnakumar
  • Syracuse University