Interactions of Mothers and Fathers with Conduct Problem Children: Comparison with a Nonclinic Group

Authors

  • Carolyn Webster-Stratton Ph.D.,

    1. Carolyn Webster-Stratton is Professor and Director, Parenting Clinic and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Program, School of Nursing, University of Washington at Seattle.
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  • Andra Fjone P.N.P.

    1. Andra Fjone, at the time this article was written, was Research Analyst at the Parenting Clinic and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Program, School of Nursing. University of Washington at Seattle.
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  • This research was supported by the NIH Institute of Nursing grant 5 R01 NR0I075-04.

  • The author is grateful to a number of people who assisted in extensive work related to data collection and data management: Joyce Aoyama, Ming Chen, Mary Kolpacoff, Don Goldstein, Lois Hancock, Doris Harkness, Pat Huckell, Terri Hollinsworth, Pal Loschen, Leslie Lee, and Kay Peters. Special appreciation goes to Mary Hammond for her statistical assistance. Finally, thanks to Barbara Hummel for careful preparation of the manuscript.

Address correspondence to Carolyn Webster-Statton, School of Nursing, SC-74, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to compare the interactions of clinic-referred mothers and fathers with their conduct problem children with those of nonclinic “normal” parents and their children without problems in terms of their expression of positive and negative affect. Forty parents and their 20 children participated. Results indicated that clinic mothers and fathers exhibited significantly increased negative verbal behaviors with their children than nonclinic parents. Valence scores also indicated clinic mothers had significantly more negative nonverbal affect behaviors than nonclinic mothers. Clinic children exhibited significantly less positive verbal and nonverbal affect behaviors with their mothers than nonclinic children. Valence scores indicated that clinic children exhibited more negative nonverbal behaviors with both mothers and fathers in comparison to nonclinic children.

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