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ERIC Number: ED259842
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Apr
Pages: 39
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Children's Responses to Strangers: Effects of Family Status, Stress, and Mother-Child Interaction.
Weinraub, Marsha; Ansul, Susan
Children's responses toward strangers, qualities of mother-child interaction, and maternal stresses were examined in 38 mother-child pairs, with children from single and two-parent families. Responses to female and male strangers were observed in a modified Strange Situation. Mother-child interaction was assessed with a modified version of Baumrind's cuisinaire rod task, and questionnaires measured maternal life stress. Results indicated that children from single-parent families were more fearful toward strangers than were children from two-parent families. Boys from both family groups were more affiliative towards strangers than were girls. Children explored more in the presence of female strangers than in the presence of male strangers. Married mothers made more maturity demands on their children than did single mothers, and all mothers placed more demands on daughters than on sons. Mothers appeared to be in greater control with daughters than with sons. Single mothers experienced more stress than did married mothers. Single mothers who were stressed communicated less optimally, were less nurturant, and tended to have children who were less compliant than were other mothers. For both single and married families, qualities of the mother-child interaction predicted children's behaviors toward female but not male strangers. Concluding discussion centers on influences affecting children's sociability and father's role in children's social development. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A