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Effects of the Interparental Relationship on Adolescents’ Emotional Security and Adjustment: The Important Role of Fathers


We examined the mediational roles of multiple types of adolescents' emotional security in relations between multiple aspects of the interparental relationship and adolescents' mental health from ages 13 to 16 (N = 392). General marital quality, nonviolent parent conflict, and physical intimate partner violence independently predicted mental health. Security in the father-adolescent relationship, over and above security with the mother and security in regard to parent conflict, mediated the link from general marital quality to adolescents' mental health. With 2 exceptions, paths were stable for boys and girls, biological- and stepfathers, and Anglo- and Mexican Americans. The findings reveal the need to expand the traditional foci on parent conflict and relationships with mothers to include general marital quality and relationships with fathers. (PsycINFO Database Record

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