Parenting Style, Familism, and Youth Adjustment in Mexican American and European American Families

Nicole E. Mahrer, Lindsay E. Holly, Linda Luecken, Sharlene Wolchik, William Fabricius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Authoritative parenting is typically considered the gold-standard parenting approach based on studies with largely European American (EA) samples. The current study evaluated a novel, “no-nonsense” parenting style in Mexican American (MA) and EA families, not captured by traditional classifications. Parenting styles of mothers and fathers, cultural values, and youth internalizing and externalizing problems were assessed in 179 MA (n = 84) and EA (n = 95) parents and adolescents across 2 years (seventh to ninth grade). MA families showed a higher proportion of “no-nonsense” parenting, characterized by high levels of acceptance as well as harsh discipline and rejection, compared with EA families. Cultural values influenced the link between parenting styles and youth outcomes across ethnicity such that when parents endorsed low adherence to familismo values, authoritative parenting predicted lower youth internalizing and externalizing problems compared with the “no-nonsense” parenting. Yet when parents endorsed strong adherence to familismo values, the authoritative and no-nonsense parenting functioned similarly. Findings have implications for the development of culturally competent parenting interventions that may lead to positive outcomes in youth from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)659-675
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Cross-Cultural Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019


  • Mexican American
  • attitudes
  • beliefs
  • cultural psychology
  • externalizing
  • family/child rearing
  • internalizing
  • values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology


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