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Children's coping with marital conflict: the role of conflict expression and gender

Shelton, Katherine Helen ORCID:, Harold, Gordon Thomas, Goeke-Morey, Marcie C. and Cummings, E. Mark 2006. Children's coping with marital conflict: the role of conflict expression and gender. Social Development 15 (2) , pp. 232-247. 10.1046/j.1467-9507.2006.00338.x

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This study compared boys’ and girls’ coping responses to videotaped representations of marital conflict that varied in conflict content, tactic, and the gender of the parent engaging in conflict behaviour. Participants were 398 children (208 boys, 190 girls) aged 12–13 years old living in the United Kingdom. Child-related conflict exchanges characterized by hostile behaviour (e.g., physical aggression) elicited greater mediation efforts by children. Children were more likely to mediate father-enacted conflict. Girls, relative to boys, endorsed more mediation to fathers’ physical aggression and mothers’ pursuit of an issue and were more avoiding of mothers’ physical aggression and threats to intactness of the family. Findings underscore the importance of considering parent and child gender in determining children’s coping efforts in the context of interparental conflict.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Uncontrolled Keywords: marital conflict; child coping; parent gender; child gender
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 0961-205X
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2022 09:39

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