Conflict, support and coping as mediators of the relation between degrading parenting and adolescent adjustment

Heather S. Caples, Manuel Barrera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Relatively few studies have examined psychological maltreatment as a risk factor for adolescent psychopathology. This cross-sectional study evaluated mother-adolescent conflict frequency, maternal support, and avoidant coping as mediators of relations between mother's degrading parenting and adolescent conduct problems and internalizing. Analyses were conducted to determine if relations between model constructs were influenced by reporter, gender, or ethnicity. The sample included 232 adolescents and their mothers. Household interviews were conducted with families who were randomly selected from two urban school districts. The proposed model was estimated using path analysis and generally fit the data well. Results suggested that mothers' degrading parenting was associated with risk for internalizing and conduct problems, regardless of adolescent gender or ethnicity. Mother-adolescent conflict frequency mediated relations between mothers' degrading parenting and adolescent adjustment. Maternal support and avoidant coping mediated relations between degrading parenting and internalizing when adolescent report was used.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)603-615
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of youth and adolescence
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2006


  • Adolescents
  • Conflict
  • Coping
  • Degrading parenting
  • Maltreatment
  • Support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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