Research Online

Logo

Goldsmiths - University of London

Mother-Child Positivity and Negativity: Family-Wide and Child-Specific Main Effects and Interactions Predict Child Adjustment

Oliver, Bonamy R and Pike, Alison. 2018. Mother-Child Positivity and Negativity: Family-Wide and Child-Specific Main Effects and Interactions Predict Child Adjustment. Developmental Psychology, 54(4), pp. 744-756. ISSN 0012-1649 [Article]

[img] Text
MS_posnegparenting_DevPsych_accepted unblinded (3).docx - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (301kB)

Abstract or Description

Links between positive and negative aspects of the parent-child relationship and child adjustment are undisputed. Scholars recognize the importance of parental differential treatment (PDT) of siblings, yet, less is known about PDT in the context of the shared (family-wide) parent-child relationship climate, or about the extent to which positivity may buffer children’s adjustment from negativity. Controlling for behavioral stability, we examined the potential for positive and negative parent-child processes to interact across and between child-specific and family-wide levels in the prediction of children’s adjustment. Specifically, in a sample of 2039 UK families, we used multilevel models to examine child-specific and family-wide mother-child relationships (at 4 years) – including interactive processes -- in the prediction of prosocial behavior and conduct problems (at 7 years). The majority of variance in children’s adjustment resided within-families: siblings were strikingly different. Accounting for behavioral stability, family-wide negativity and negative PDT associated with both prosociality and conduct problems. Importantly, we demonstrated interactions between, i) family-wide negativity and negative PDT for conduct problems, as well as, ii) positive and negative PDT in the prediction of both prosocial behavior and conduct problems. Results suggest negative PDT associates with increased conduct problems over time, even when the overall family climate is low in negativity. They also indicate a buffering role of positive PDT on the deleterious effects of negative PDT for children's adjustment. Implications for both research and practice are discussed, including the importance of information gained by considering more than one child in the family.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1037/dev0000467

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology

Dates:

DateEvent
6 October 2017Accepted
14 December 2017Published Online
April 2018Published

Item ID:

21724

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2017 12:18

Last Modified:

21 Feb 2019 16:57

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/21724

View statistics for this item...

Edit Record Edit Record (login required)