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Adolescents' Characteristics and Parents' Beliefs as Predictors of Parentsapos; Peer Management Behaviors


Requests for reprints should be sent to Lauree C. Tilton-Weaver, Department of Psychology, ASH 347, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE 68182-0274. E-mail:


This study examined parents' reported use of peer management behaviors (i.e., communicating preferences, communicating disapproval, supporting friendships, and information seeking) and linked these behaviors to (a) adolescentsapos; self-reported psychosocial adjustment and friendships and (b) parents' beliefs about adolescents' peer relationships (i.e., perceived efficacy in managing adolescents' friendships and concerns about adolescents' friendships). The participants were 269 parents (161 mothers, 108 fathers) and their predominantly White adolescents in Grades 6 and 9 (N=177). Results suggest that parents may be more apt to use some behaviors (e.g., communicating disapproval and information seeking) when there are indications that their adolescents are engaged in problem behaviors and have friends who are deviant. In addition, parents' concerns about their adolescents' friends mediate the relationship between adolescent problem behaviors and parents' communications of disapproval. Parents' peer management is promising as a route to understand further the nature of parent–peer linkages.