ERIC Number: ED297255
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Apr
Levels of Analyses: Changes in Patterns of Family Interactions from Dyadic to Triadic Level.
Hagan, Margaret Stanley; Deal, James E.
One goal of a longitudinal study of stepfamilies, divorced maternal custody families, and nondivorced families was to assess similarities and differences between family members' interactions at the dyadic and triadic levels across time. Observers' ratings of videotaped spouse-to-spouse, parent-to-child, and child-to-parent behaviors during both dyadic and triadic problem-solving settings were obtained at three waves of data collection. The results revealed that, compared to mothers in nondivorced families, remarried mothers were significantly less positive, more negative, and less controlling in dyadic mother-child interactions even after 26 months of remarriage. In contrast, children of remarried mothers closely resembled children in nondivorced families in their behaviors toward their mothers. Data on the stepfather-stepchild relationship showed little evidence that the stepfather adopted a more active and positive parental role over time. The positive and negative behaviors of stepfathers and stepchildren paralleled each other at all three waves of data collection. The hypothesis that interactions between nondivorced family members would be moe consistent than would interactions between remarried family members was partially supported. Children in newly forming stepfamilies experienced greater inconsistencies than did children in nondivorced families. Inconsistencies observed may be an index of continued role ambiguity even 2.5 years after remarriage. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association (34th, New Orleans, LA, March 31-April 2, 1988). For related documents, see CG 021 035-036 and CG 021 038-039.