Mother- and father-child mutuality in Anglo and Indian British families: a link with lower externalizing problems.

Abstract

We observed mother- and father-child dyadic mutuality (responsiveness, interaction reciprocity, and cooperation), and its association with child behavior problems, in a socioeconomically and ethnically diverse sample of 125 male (51%) and female 7-to-9-year-old children. Dyadic mutuality and positivity were coded from in-home videotaped structured tasks, and parents completed ratings of child externalizing problems. Mothers showed more mutuality than fathers. The same child showed moderately similar mutuality with both of her or his parents (r = .47). Mutuality was higher among Anglo parents compared to Indian parents, an effect that was due in part to acculturation (i.e., years since immigration, native language use, traditional native culture attitudes). Greater mutuality, when coupled with dyadic positive affect, was associated with fewer externalizing problems (R2 = .24). This pattern held across gender, ethnic, and sociocconomic groups.

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@article{DeaterDeckard2004MotherAF, title={Mother- and father-child mutuality in Anglo and Indian British families: a link with lower externalizing problems.}, author={Kirby Deater-Deckard and Na'ama Atzaba-Poria and Alison Pike}, journal={Journal of abnormal child psychology}, year={2004}, volume={32 6}, pages={609-20} }