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Paternal Involvement and Children's Behavior Problems

Paul R. Amato and Fernando Rivera
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 61, No. 2 (May, 1999), pp. 375-384
DOI: 10.2307/353755
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/353755
Page Count: 10
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Paternal Involvement and Children's Behavior Problems
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Abstract

Although a large number of studies have examined associations between paternal involvement and children's outcomes, most are based on a single source of data or fail to control for maternal involvement. We used data from the National Survey of Families and Households (n = 994) to test the hypothesis that positive father involvement is associated with fewer behavior problems in children. To avoid same-source bias, we used fathers' reports of involvement with children and mothers' reports of children's behavior problems. To determine if fathers make a unique contribution to their children's behavior, we controlled for mothers' reports of maternal involvement. Structural equation models revealed that positive paternal and maternal involvement were independently and significantly associated with children's behavior problems. Estimated effects were similar for biological fathers, stepfathers, White fathers, Black fathers, and Latino fathers.

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