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01-07-2013 | Original Paper | Uitgave 5/2013

Journal of Child and Family Studies 5/2013

Links Between Perception of Parental Actions and Prosocial Behavior in Early Adolescence

Journal of Child and Family Studies > Uitgave 5/2013
María Cristina Richaud, Belén Mesurado, Viviana Lemos


We analyzed the links between parental styles, practices, and empathy and specific forms of prosocial behaviors in early adolescence. The Argentine scale of perception of relationships with parents for children and young adolescents, prosocial tendencies measure, parenting practices measure, and children’s perception of parental empathy were administered to a sample of 289 middle class children, aged 10–16, of both sexes, from primary and secondary schools in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Correlations and hierarchical regressions were used to examine (1) relationships between parental styles, children’s perception of parental empathy, parental practices, and children’s prosocial behavior, (2) the amount of unique prediction from parental styles, children’s perception of parental empathy, and parental practices to children’s prosocial behavior. Results indicated that different aspects of parental actions (parental styles, practice, and empathy) have a differential relation according to the type of prosocial behavior involved. When taking these three kinds of parental behavior into account, parental styles are related to public and responsive aspects especially through extreme control by the mother. Parental practices, in turn, are related mainly with anonymous and altruistic aspects, but with this latter negatively. Finally, adolescents’ perception of parental empathy explains added variance in all the cases, though to a lesser extent.

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