Transmission of Cultural Values among Mexican-Origin Parents and Their Adolescent and Emerging Adult Offspring

Norma J. Perez-Brena, Kimberly Updegraff, Adriana J. Umaña-Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


The integration of the U.S. and Mexican culture is an important process associated with Mexican-origin youths' adjustment and family dynamics. The current study examined the reciprocal associations in parents' and two offspring's cultural values (i.e., familism and respect) in 246 Mexican-origin families. Overall, mothers' values were associated with increases in youths' values 5 years later. In contrast, youths' familism values were associated with increases in fathers' familism values 5 years later. In addition, developmental differences emerged where parent-to-offspring effects were more consistent for youth transitioning from early to late adolescence than for youth transitioning from middle adolescence to emerging adulthood. Finally, moderation by immigrant status revealed a youth-to-parent effect for mother-youth immigrant dyads, but not for dyads where youth were U.S.-raised. Our findings highlight the reciprocal nature of parent-youth value socialization and provide a nuanced understanding of these processes through the consideration of familism and respect values. As Mexican-origin youth represent a large and rapidly growing segment of the U.S. population, research that advances our understanding of how these youth develop values that foster family cohesion and support is crucial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)232-246
Number of pages15
JournalFamily Process
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015


  • Adolescence
  • Cultural Values
  • Emerging Adulthood
  • Mexican-Origin
  • Parent-Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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