Mothers' and Fathers' Perceptions of Change and Continuity in Their Relationships With Young Adult Sons and Daughters

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Heather M. Helms, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: Guided by contemporary feminist revisions of individual theories on adolescent development, interviews with 142 parent dyads were conducted to better understand the variation in mothers' and fathers' perceptions of changes and continuities in their relationships with their firstborn young adult sons and daughters. A between-families content analysis of parents' responses revealed that the most salient issues were firstborns' independence, contact and time spent together, and role patterns. Several gendered patterns emerged, suggesting that mothers and fathers might differentially relate to their daughters and sons. However, a within-family analysis of parental dyads' responses challenges previously held beliefs about gender differences and suggests few gendered differences emerge when considering responses from both parents within the same family. Implications for future research on parent—child relationships are discussed.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2008
parent-child relationships, young adulthood, gendered relationships, content analysis

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