Patterns of father-child and mother-child interactions in married families with preschool children: a comparative study;
The purpose of this study was to describe a subset of family interactions: father-preschool child and mother-preschool child. The patterns of interest were those of controlling and supportive behaviors. This study was accomplished by conducting an analysis of the base rate and reciprocity of controlling and supportive behaviors that fathers and their preschool children and mothers and their preschool children directed toward each other. In addition, the mediating effects of seven selected psychosocial variables (age, religion, years of education, income, employment of mothers, number of siblings, and gender of child) upon the interactional process were studied. Eighty-three married families with preschool children were identified from randomly selected schools, preschools, and day-care providers. A multimeasure approach was utilized to obtain a comprehensive view of the interactional patterns of the families. Four written tests including the General Well-Being Schedule, Spanier Dyadic Adjustment Scale, Marital Satisfaction, Parental Social Adjustment Scale of Self-Report, and Child Behavior Checklist were administered to elicit psychosocial information. Demographic information also was collected from both parents through an interview form. An Observer Impressions Inventory was employed to capture an outsider's view of each family's dynamics, and, finally, videotaping sessions in the naturalistic setting of the 83 homes recorded verbatim interactional sequences between family members. The videotaped information was timed and coded sequentially, and behaviors were categorized and placed within a control-support matrix for statistical analysis. An interpretation of the findings indicated that although fathers' total numbers of controlling and supportive behaviors were quantitatively less than mothers', fathers directed significantly higher base rates of supportive behaviors toward their preschool children than did mothers. Preschool children, however, directed significantly greater base rates of controlling behaviors to mothers. Reciprocity of both control and support was significantly greater in the mother-child dyad. Therefore, the sequential exchange of both controlling and supportive behavior gave the mother-child interaction a more dynamic quality. Opportunity for conflict and mutual support were greater in the mother-child dyad.
Digital reproduction of “Patterns of father-child and mother-child interactions in married families with preschool children: a comparative study.” Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library. Print version of “Patterns of father-child and mother-child interactions in married families with preschool children: a comparative study.” available at J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collection. HQ5.5 1993 .M36.