Factors Associated with Positive Relationships between Stepfathers and Adolescent Stepchildren

Citation

King, Valarie; Thorsen, Maggie L.; & Amato, Paul R. (2014). Factors Associated with Positive Relationships between Stepfathers and Adolescent Stepchildren. Social Science Research. vol. 47 pp. 16-29 , PMCID: PMC4052218

Abstract

This study employs nationally representative data on adolescents and their stepfathers (n = 2085) from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) to examine factors associated with positive stepfather-stepchild relationships in married stepfamilies. Results reveal substantial variability in the perceived quality of adolescents’ relationships with stepfathers. Structural equation models using Wave I data reveal that close relationships with mothers and close ties between mothers and stepfathers are positively related to the perceived quality of adolescents’ relationships with stepfathers. Longitudinal models using Waves I and II do not yield definitive results but suggest that the direction of influence runs in both directions, with the mother-child relationship and the stepfather-stepchild relationship mutually reinforcing one another. We identify a number of other factors that are associated with positive stepfather-stepchild ties, as well as a few factors that may be less consequential than previously thought. Most of the correlates of positive stepfather-stepchild relationships are similar for boys and girls; for Whites, Blacks, and Hispanics; and for stepfamilies of various durations.

URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0049089X14000702

Keyword(s)

Father-child relations

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Social Science Research

Author(s)

King, Valarie
Thorsen, Maggie L.
Amato, Paul R.

Year Published

2014

Volume Number

47

Pages

16-29

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssresearch.2014.03.010

PMCID

PMC4052218

NIHMSID

NIHMS582444

Reference ID

4906