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Father Involvement and Mothers’ Parenting Stress: The Role of Relationship Status

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Author Info

  • Kei M. Nomaguchi

    (Bowling Green State University)

  • Susan L. Brown

    (Bowling Green State University)

  • Tanya M. Leyman

    (Bowling Green State University)

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    Abstract

    Although the salutatory effects of father involvement on child well-being are well established, whether similar benefits accrue to children’s mothers is unknown. The prevailing cultural ideal of involved fathering coupled with the growing complexity of mother-father relationship contexts signal that an examination of how father involvement shapes mothers’ parenting stress is overdue. Using data from the Fragile Families and Child Well-being Study (N = 2,480) , we find father involvement is related to lower parenting stress for mothers who are married to, cohabiting with, or dating the child’s father, but not for mothers who are no longer romantically involved with the father. For mothers living with a new partner, the current partner’s, not the biological father’s, involvement is related to less parenting stress. Results support the notion that the stress buffering effectiveness of social support, conceptualized here as father involvement, depends on the relationship context between support recipients and providers.

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    File URL: http://crcw.princeton.edu/workingpapers/WP12-07-FF.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing. in its series Working Papers with number 1390.

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    Date of creation: Apr 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:pri:crcwel:wp12-07-ff

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    Related research

    Keywords: Father Involvement; Parenting Stress; Relationship Status; Role Strain; Social Support;

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    1. Laura Tach & Ronald Mincy & Kathryn Edin, 2010. "Parenting as A “package deal”: Relationships, fertility, and nonresident father involvement among unmarried parents," Demography, Springer, Springer, vol. 47(1), pages 181-204, February.
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    Cited by:
    1. Laura Tach, 2012. "Family Complexity, Childbearing, and Parenting Stress: A Comparison of Mothers’ and Fathers’ Experiences," Working Papers, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing. 1425, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing..

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