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Negative parent-adolescent relationship as risk factor for delinquency: Girls versus boys.

By L. Kalee


This study investigated gender differences in the parent-adolescent relationship and delinquency. To date, research on gender differences and its moderating role in risk factors of delinquency is rare, whereas this knowledge is required for effective interventions. The current sample consisted of 1200 Dutch adolescents who were drawn from the fifth wave of the CONAMORE study. Self-reported data was tested to give an answer to the question whether gender moderates the relationship between the parent-adolescent relationship (separately for mother and father) and delinquency. It was hypothesized that a negative parent-adolescent relationship (in particular with the mother) is a more important risk factor for delinquency in girls than in boys. The parent-adolescent relationship was divided into ‘support’ and ‘negative interactions’. To analyze the data, hierarchical multiple regression (moderation) analyses were conducted. Findings indicate that ‘support’ did not show a significant relationship with delinquency. By contrast, ‘negative interactions’ with both mother and father was positively and significantly related to delinquency. Gender did only moderate the relationship between ‘negative interactions’ with the father and delinquency. Contrary to our expectation, it was found that this relationship was stronger for boys than for girls. Implications for the field of juvenile delinquency and directions for future research are discussed

Topics: parent-adolescent relationship; delinquency; gender; girls; risk factor
Year: 2016
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