Positive Parenting and Child Externalizing Behavior | Free Essay Example

Positive Parenting and Child Externalizing Behavior

Words: 1231
Topic: Family, Life & Experiences

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The study by Boeldt et al. (2012) was referenced in Barnett and Scaramella (2013). Boeldt et al. (2012) investigated the association between positive parenting and externalizing behaviors of children. It is usually hypothesized that positive parenting practices are capable of averting adverse behaviors in offspring through a process that is mediated by the environment; an alternative to this assumption is that the connection between these factors is, in fact, of genetic origins (Boeldt et al., 2012).

Boeldt et al. (2012) confirmed the negative correlation between positive parenting in toddlerhood and externalizing behaviors during childhood, but were unable to find out whether the correlation was caused by genetic or environmental factors. This article is significant to the proposed dissertation because it shows how mothering styles can affect child behaviors, and the latter appears likely to impact mother-son relationships.

The article by Elliott and Aseltine (2013) is cited in Elliott, Powell, and Brenton (2015). Elliott and Aseltine (2013) examined the differences in mother’s care and concerns for their children in hostile environments across various races and classes of families, and different genders of children. It was investigated how 40 different mothers (Black, White, and Latino) perceived the social worlds off their offspring, and what steps they took to protect their children. This study adds to the literature review on the dissertation topic because it provides information about mothers’ perceptions about the environment of their sons and daughters, and the risks that these children face. Thus, it might provide additional insights into the mother-son relationships in Black families.

The article by Fry et al. (2012) was used in Farley and Kim-Spoon, 2014. Fry et al. (2012) scrutinized the self-efficacy of children about their affective self-regulation, investigating whether it was a mediator in a relationship between the caring climate of these children (as perceived by themselves) and their mental well-being. Statistical analyses revealed that the perceived affective self-regulatory efficacy of these children, both positive and negative, indeed served as a mediator between the caring climate as viewed by the children, and their mental well-being (Fry et al., 2012). This study contributes to the proposed topic because it shows that a caring climate is associated with mental well-being, which may be important in mother-child relationships.

Meldrum, Young, Hay, and Flexon (2012) were cited in Farley and Kim-Spoon, 2014. Meldrum et al. (2012) researched the mutual impact of self-control of children and maternal attachment in early childhood and until adolescence. It was discovered that the self-control of children and their mothers’ attachment to them mutually influence each other during childhood; however, these effects become statistically insignificant in adolescence (Meldrum et al., 2012). These findings are important for the proposed topic because they scrutinize one of the factors which affect the mother-son relationship.

The study by Nelson, Leerkes, O’Brien, Calkins, & Marcovitch (2012) was used in Barnett and Scaramella (2013). Nelson et al. (2012) explored the beliefs of African American and European American mothers about the negative emotions of their young children. Although all mothers taught their children about emotions similarly, regardless of race or child’s gender, Black mothers perceived the display of adverse emotions as much more unacceptable than European American mothers did, and showed fewer supportive behaviors. Also, African American mothers were more unsupportive towards boys than towards girls.

It is concluded that this situation might be related to the attempts of Black mothers to protect their offspring from discrimination (Nelson et al., 2012). These findings are relevant to the proposed study because they shed some light on factors that might adversely impact mother-son relationships in Black families.

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Danforth and Miller (2017) cite Barajas (2011). Danforth and Miller (2017) interviewed 22 African American males to find out the roles of their families (mainly mothers) in developing qualities (such as resiliency) that would later assist them to enroll in a college. It was found that such factors as the mothers’ expectations that their progenies would attend college, hands-on assistance supplied during the application process, mothers’ providing an example by attending college themselves (in cases when this was possible), as well as authoritative parenting, served as the basis for the resiliency development in the Black males during their childhood that later helped them enroll in college (Danforth & Miller, 2017). These findings are important for the proposed study because they show which features of parenting and mother-son relationships might help develop resiliency in Black children of single mothers.

Gonzalez, Jones, Kincaid, and Cuellar (2012) cite Choi and Jackson (2011). Gonzalez et al. (2012) explored the role of hopelessness in the association between neighborhood context and the adjustment of youth from single-mother African American families. It was discovered that there is a direct association between neighborhood context and youth adjustment, and there is also such an association between these two variables that are impacted by the levels of hopelessness (Gonzalez et al., 2012).

It is concluded that interventions for reducing hopelessness may be useful for adjustment of Black children from single-mother homes in adverse neighborhoods (Gonzalez et al., 2012). This is relevant to the proposed study because it might offer insights into how to help single Black mothers to develop relationships with their sons that would assist these sons in adjusting to negative surroundings such as adverse neighborhoods.

Skinner, Perkins, Wood, and Kurtz-Costes (2015) cite Mandara, Murray, Telesford, Varner, and Richman (2012). Skinner et al. (2015) investigated the development of views on gender and gender roles in African American youth in comparison to young individuals of other races. Six aspects were scrutinized: biological/categorical sex, personal and social attributes, relationships in the society, symbols and styles, gender-related values, and interests and activities (Skinner et al., 2015).

It was found that gender plays an essential role in the development of Black young individuals, and many of the aspects of gender development are similar to those of other races. This study is significant for the proposed dissertation because it sheds light on the development of gender-related issues in children, which is part of the development process that is overseen by mothers of single-parent Black children in the population in question.

Sterrett et al. (2013) cite Barajas (2011). Sterrett et al. (2013) examined the impact of parenting persons’ behaviors on self-esteem and externalizing in children of single Black mothers. It was discovered that co-parenting individuals’ monitoring was significantly related to symptoms of externalizing, but not to self-esteem; whereas parenting persons’ warmth towards children was significantly and strongly associated with self-esteem, and was significantly but more weakly associated with externalizing symptoms (Sterrett et al., 2013). This study is relevant for the proposed research topic because it provides insights into behaviors that can be recommended for co-parenting persons when developing the relationships with a child, and which might potentially improve the mother-child relationships as well.

Varner and Mandara (2013) cite Mandara et al. (2012). Varner and Mandara (2013) researched the impact of parenting differences on the academic achievements of male and female adolescent Black children. It was unveiled that girls had much greater GPA scores and rest results (Varner & Mandara, 2013). Girls stated that they obtained much more communication, control, and rule enforcement from their mothers, but had a lower amount of autonomy when it came to making decisions (Varner & Mandara, 2013). These findings can be used for the proposed dissertation topic because they provide insights into how African American mothers parent their male children.


Barajas, M. S. (2011). Academic achievement of children in single parent homes: A critical review. The Hilltop Review, 5(1), 13-21. Web.

Barnett, M. A., & Scaramella, L. V. (2013). Mothers’ parenting and child sex differences in behavior problems among African American preschoolers. Journal of Family Psychology, 27(5), 773-783. Web.

Boeldt, D. L., Rhee, S. H., DiLalla, L. F., Mullineaux, P. Y., Schulz‐Heik, R. J., Corley, R. P.,…Hewitt, J. K. (2012). The association between positive parenting and externalizing behaviour. Infant and Child Development, 21(1), 85-106. Web.

Choi, J.-K., & Jackson, A. P. (2011). Fathers’ involvement and child behavior problems in poor African American single-mother families. Children and Youth Services Review, 33(5), 698-704.

Danforth, L., & Miller, J. (2017). African American males from female-headed households: Using family resilience to navigate their way to college. Journal of Family Social Work, 1, 1-17. Web.

Elliott, S., & Aseltine, E. (2013). Raising teenagers in hostile environments: How race, class, and gender matter for mothers’ protective carework. Journal of Family Issues, 34(6), 719-744. Web.

Elliott, S., Powell, R., & Brenton, J. (2015). Being a good mom: Low-income, Black single mothers negotiate intensive mothering. Journal of Family Issues, 36(3), 351-370.

Farley, J. P., & Kim-Spoon, J. (2014). The development of adolescent self-regulation: Reviewing the role of parent, peer, friend, and romantic relationships. Journal of Adolescence, 37(4), 433-440. Web.

Fry, M. D., Guivernau, M., Kim, M. S., Newton, M., Gano-Overway, L. A., & Magyar, T. M. (2012). Youth perceptions of a caring climate, emotional regulation, and psychological well-being. Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology, 1(1), 44-57. Web.

Gonzalez, M., Jones, D. J., Kincaid, C. Y., & Cuellar, J. (2012). Neighborhood context and adjustment in African American youths from single mother homes: The intervening role of hopelessness. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 18(2), 109-117.

Mandara, J., Murray, C. B., Telesford, J. M., Varner, F. A., & Richman, S. B. (2012). Observed gender differences in African American mother‐child relationships and child behavior. Family Relations, 61(1), 129-141. Web.

Meldrum, R. C., Young, J. T., Hay, C., & Flexon, J. L. (2012). Does self-control influence maternal attachment? A reciprocal effects analysis from early childhood through middle adolescence. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 28(4), 673-699. Web.

Nelson, J. A., Leerkes, E. M., O’Brien, M., Calkins, S. D., & Marcovitch, S. (2012). African American and European American mothers’ beliefs about negative emotions and emotion socialization practices. Parenting: Science and Practice, 12(1), 22-41.

Skinner, O. D., Perkins, K., Wood, D., & Kurtz-Costes, B. (2015). Gender development in African American youth. Journal of Black Psychology, 42(5), 394-423. Web.

Sterrett, E. M., Kincaid, C., Ness, E., Gonzalez, M., McKee, L. G., & Jones, D. J. (2013). Youth functioning in the coparenting context: A mixed methods study of African American single mother families. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 24(2), 455-469.

Varner, F., & Mandara, J. (2013). Differential parenting of African American adolescents as an explanation for gender disparities in achievement. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 24(4), 667-680.