Associations Between Parental Depressive Symptoms, Coparenting, and Behavior Outcomes in Young Children with Previously Incarcerated Fathers
AuthorPech, Alexandria Sarissa
parental depressive symptoms
AdvisorCurran, Melissa A.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of the study is to examine young children's internalizing and externalizing behaviors in the context of post paternal incarceration by focusing on both risks (i.e., parental depressive symptoms), protective factors (i.e., coparenting alliance), and their impact considered together. The final sample included 426 previously incarcerated fathers and the biological mothers of their three-year-old children. Using hierarchical multiple regression, I examined three sets of analyses: 1) the association between parental depressive symptoms and children's behavior outcomes, 2) the association between coparenting alliance and children's behavior, 3) the association between parental depressive symptoms and children's behavior as moderated by coparenting alliance. Expectedly, higher paternal depressive symptoms were associated with higher externalizing behavioral problems in children. Unexpectedly, higher maternal depressive symptoms were associated with lower externalizing behavioral problems. Also, unexpectedly, the associations between maternal and paternal coparenting alliance and both child behavioral outcomes were not statistically significant. Further, when mothers reported lower coparenting alliance with their child's father, the negative association between fathers' depressive symptoms and children’s internalizing behavioral problems was not attenuated; in fact, children had higher internalizing behavioral problems. My findings suggests father's depressive symptoms are an important point of consideration given the deleterious effects parental depressive symptoms can have on children, and the risks for depressive symptoms among formerly incarcerated fathers. Further, my findings have implications for addressing and treating fathers' depressive symptoms when children are relatively young in order to lower internalizing behavior problems from persisting across and beyond childhood.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Family & Consumer Sciences