The aim of this study was to examine the effects of life-span contextual variation on father-child relationships. Sixty families in which both parents were either younger than 26 or older than 29 when they began childbearing, and whose child was between the ages of 3 and 5 at the time of the study participated. Videotaped observations of father-child play were collected. Questionnaires were also administered to fathers, assessing their marital satisfaction, work-home compatibility, and social network attributes. Older fathers established stronger connections to extra-familial contexts and displayed greater reliance on verbal mechanisms to engage children during play. Younger fathers maintained a more traditional style of fathering and engaged their children through physical stimulation. The implications of these findings for models of father-child relationships were explored.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 14, 2004
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