Poor Parents, Poor Parenting? The Influence of Poverty

Ronald E Bulanda, Bowling Green State University

This study investigates the relationship between family poverty status, parenting, and children's behavioral outcomes. A social-contextual approach is employed to warrant an isolated assessment of parenting only within married two parent families. In the analyses, a sociodemographic profile of parenting is constructed, illustrating how parenting style, control, and support varies across poor statuses. Then, the interactions of poverty and parenting strategies are examined in predicting negative child outcomes, including delinquency. Results of this study have implications for the home environments of impoverished children, as well as programs designed to improve the economic well-being of families. This study uses data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth 1997 (NLSY97). The preliminary results suggest parenting styles differ by poverty status for both married mothers and fathers. Also, maternal monitoring and paternal support are associated with family poor status. Subsequent tests will illustrate what role these relationships play in explaining children's behavioral outcomes.

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Presented in Poster Session 3: Families, Parenting, Adolescents, and Children