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Mom and dad are at it again: adolescent perceptions of marital conflict and adolescent psychological distress.

Authors
  • Harold, G T
  • Fincham, F D
  • Osborne, L N
  • Conger, R D
Type
Published Article
Journal
Developmental psychology
Publication Date
Mar 01, 1997
Volume
33
Issue
2
Pages
333–350
Identifiers
PMID: 9147841
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

In these two studies, the authors used children's perceptions of family relationships to examine simultaneously direct and indirect links between marital conflict and child adjustment. With data pertaining to 146 sixth and seventh graders, Study 1 supported direct and indirect effects of perceptions of marital conflict on internalizing behaviors, and indirect effects for externalizing behaviors. In Study 2, data analyzed from 451 families showed indirect effects of marital conflict and parent-to-child hostility, through adolescent perceptions of such behavior, on both current distress and distress 12 months later in 3 of 4 models estimated. Direct and indirect effects were found for boys' concurrent internalizing behavior. Implications and limitations of both studies are discussed to address the need for a more sophisticated theoretical approach to examine why an association exists between marital conflict and child adjustment.

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