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06-11-2017 | Original Paper | Uitgave 3/2018

Journal of Child and Family Studies 3/2018

When and How Do Race/Ethnicity Relate to Dysfunctional Discipline Practices?

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Child and Family Studies > Uitgave 3/2018
Auteurs:
Ericka Ball Cooper, Anna Abate, Maxx D. Airrington, Leslie Taylor, Amanda C. Venta

Abstract

Dysfunctional discipline has been linked with a variety of negative outcomes in children and is positively correlated with parent-reported stress. Furthermore, parental attributions have been supported as a mediator of the relation between stress and dysfunctional discipline. Race/ethnicity may additionally play a moderating role in these pathways, and racial/ethnic differences in parenting practices are often noted. This study examined a moderated-mediational model in which specific parental attributions (i.e., Stable, Internal, and Blaming/Intentional) mediated the association between parent-reported stress and dysfunctional discipline (i.e., Lax, Overreactive, and Hostile). Race/ethnicity was examined as a moderator of the association between parental attributions and dysfunctional discipline in a sample of 234 low-income adult caregivers at high-risk of child maltreatment. Overall, Stable and Blaming/Intentional attributions were found to explain the pathway between parent-reported stress and both Overreactivity and Hostility. Furthermore, race/ethnicity functioned as a differential moderator. Among Hispanic caregivers, the pathways to both Overreactivity and Hostility were explained by Stable attributions. Conversely, within the African American caregivers, only Blaming/Intentional attributions served as a mediator for Overreactivity and Hostility. Finally, among Caucasian caregivers, Stable attributions only explained Hostile discipline practices, while Blaming/Intentional attributions served as the pathway for both Overreactivity and Hostility. These findings provide the literature with a broader understanding of parent-reported stress and dysfunctional discipline and suggest different attributional treatment targets for caregivers from different racial/ethnic groups.

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