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Unformatted text preview: EMPIRICAL RESEARCH A Longitudinal Examination of the Bidirectional Associations Among Perceived Parenting Behaviors, Adolescent Disclosure and Problem Behavior Across the High School Years Teena Willoughby Chloe A. Hamza Received: 19 April 2010 / Accepted: 21 June 2010 / Published online: 4 July 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010 Abstract This longitudinal study investigated the importance of parental monitoring to the deterrence of adolescent problem behavior by examining bidirectional associations among perceived parental monitoring, ado- lescent disclosure and problem behaviors across the high school years. Adolescents ( N = 2,941; 50.3% female) were surveyed each year from grades 9 through 12. There was a reciprocal association between problem behavior and parental knowledge, such that higher parental knowledge predicted reduced problem behavior over time and higher problem behavior in turn predicted lower parental knowl- edge. It was adolescent disclosure that predicted parental knowledge, however, rather than parental monitoring behaviors. Parental control was a direct deterrent of prob- lem behavior over time, and time spent engaged in family fun activities demonstrated indirect links to problem behavior, particularly through parental control and ado- lescent disclosure. Importantly, these effects were invariant across grade. Overall, these findings suggest a family- centered process, rather than primarily a youth-driven or parent-driven process, in the prediction of problem behavior. Keywords Adolescent problem behavior Longitudinal study Bidirectional effects Perceived parental monitoring behaviors Adolescent disclosure Introduction The importance of parental monitoring to the deterrence of adolescent problem behavior has long been emphasized in developmental theories of adolescence and is supported by findings from many research studies (e.g., Dishion and McMahon 1998 ; Pettit et al. 1999 ; Steinberg et al. 1994 ). Historically, parental monitoring has been conceptualized as direct actions on the part of parents to control and solicit information about their adolescents activities and friends (Dishion and McMahon 1998 ), such as setting rules for how late their adolescent can stay out at night and asking their adolescent where they have been or where they are going. Previous research has been persuasive, showing that highly monitored adolescents engage in less delinquency (e.g., Patterson and Stouthamer-Loeber 1984 ), cigarette smoking (Mott et al. 1999 ), substance use (Barnes et al. 2000 ), and risky sexual behaviors (Meschke and Silberei- sen 1997 ) than do poorly monitored adolescents. Research by Stattin and Kerr ( 2000 ; Kerr and Stattin 2000 ), however, brought the association between parental monitoring and problem behavior into question, forcing researchers to reconsider the role of parent monitoring in problem behavior prevention (see also Crouter and Head 2002 )....
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This note was uploaded on 04/29/2011 for the course PSYC 4070 taught by Professor Rosenthal during the Spring '10 term at LSU.
- Spring '10
- Developmental Psychology