Learning Objectives • How is the family viewed by the family systems theory? • How do individual family systems change? • How have families in general changed during the 20th century?
The Family as a System • Family Systems Theory • A “whole” consisting of interrelated parts • Each affects and is affected by the others • Nuclear family: Mother, father, children • Extended family household • Ecologicalsystems approach • Family as system within a system • Family as a changing system
More Family Diversity • More single adults, empty nesters included • Postponed marriage, Fewer children • More years without children • More women working, More divorce: 4/10 • More remarriages, reconstituted families • More single-parent families, child poverty • More multigenerational (beanpole) families • Fewer caregivers for aging adults
Trends • Decline of Marriage and Family • Negative effects • Divorce, single parent family, poverty • Purpose of Marriage Debate • Meet emotional needs of adults? • Raise children? • Postponed marriage improves success rate • More equality of sexes in family roles
A model of the relationship among family economic stress, patterns of parenting, and adolescent adjustment.
Learning Objectives • How is the father-infant relationship similar to and different from the mother-infant relationship?
Infancy: Relationships • Fathers are capable of sensitive parenting • A more playful parent role • Mothers spend more time with them • Divorce means less fathering • Fathers’ warmth and affection promotes: • Social competence, achievement • Fewer psychological disorders • Indirect effects: How parents get along
Learning Objectives • What are two basic dimensions of parenting? • What patterns of child rearing emerge from these dimensions? • How do these parenting styles affect children’s development? • How does social class affect parenting style?
Parenting Styles • Two Dimensions of Parenting • Acceptance/Responsiveness (AC) • Demandingness/Control (DC) • Baumrind’s Parenting Types • Authoritarian: AC=high, DC=low • Authoritative: AC=high, DC=high • Permissive: AC=low, DC=high • Neglectful: AC=low, DC=low
The acceptance/responsiveness and demandingness/control dimensions of parenting. Which combination best describes your parents’ approach?
Outcomes of Parenting Styles • Children of authoritative parents • Adjusted, responsible, high achievement • Children of authoritarian parents • Moody, unhappy, aimless • Children of permissive parents • Low: self-control, independent, achievers • Children of neglectful/uninvolved parents • Behavior problems, antisocial
Effects of Social Class • Lower-SES Parents • Stress obedience to authority • Restrictive and authoritarian • Use reasoning less • Show less warmth/affection • Middle-SES Parents • Stress individual initiative, achievement
Learning Objectives • What effects do parents have on their children and what effects do children have on their parents? • What is the transactional model of family influence? • What features characterize sibling relationships across the life span? • How do siblings contribute to development? • What are relationships like between adolescents and their parents?
Models of Influence on Family • Parent Effects Model • Parental influence and style important • Child Effects Model • Nature of child stressed • Transactional Model • Reciprocal influences
Sibling Relationships • Firstborn stress at new sibling • Temporary behavior problems • Sibling rivalry • Less conflict by adolescence • Typically ambivalent about sibling • Overall, mostly positive effects of having a sibling • Emotional support, teacher to younger
The Adolescent • Typically, close relationships with parents • Conflicts mostly over minor issues • Change in balance of power • Authoritative parent most effective • Autonomy, independence achieved
Learning Objectives • How does marriage and parenthood affect adults? • What changes occur in the family as the children mature and leave home? • What sorts of roles do grandparents establish with their grandchildren? • How do various family relationships (e.g., spouses, siblings, parent-child) change during adulthood?
Establishing Marriage and Family • In the US, 90% of adults choose to marry • Honeymoon: Happy but short • Problems: Loss of enthusiasm • Usually exist beforehand • Negativity common • New Parenthood • Stressful, joyful • Coping skills, resources important
Child Rearing and Launching • A heavier workload for parents • More stress in life generally • Marital happiness declines • Best if both parents share home workload • The Empty Nest • Marital happiness increases after the children leave home
Grandparenthood • Average age: 47 • Grand-parenting styles • Remote (29%): Distant • Companionate (55%): Frequent, enjoyable visits • Involved (16%): Child care, advise, like substitute parents • Most find it gratifying • Parent/grandparent relationship important
Marriage Relationships • Marriage Brings Stability • Happier, healthier, than non-marrieds • Lonelier if divorced or widowed • Better off financially • Widowhood: By about age 65 • 73% of men still living with their wives • 59% of women widowed or living alone
Sibling and Parent-Child Relationships • Siblings: Longest-lasting relationship we have • If close in childhood, also as adults • Not close in childhood, not close as adults • Parent-Child Remain Close • Modified extended family • Caring for Aging Parents • “Middle generation squeeze” • Filial responsibility common
Learning Objectives • What sorts of diversity exist in today’s families? • What is the life satisfaction of people in these different types of families? • How does divorce affect family relationships?
Diversity in Family Life • Cohabitation: On the rise • Higher divorce rate if they marry • Childless married couples • Marital satisfaction higher • Dual-career families: Spillover effects • Both positive and negative • Gay and lesbian families: More egalitarian • Children generally well adjusted
Divorce • High-Risk Couples • Married about 7 years • Teen-age marriages, short courtship • Pregnant before marriage • Low SES • Post-Divorce Crisis • 1-2 years • Parents, children, at risk for depression
Children of Divorce • Often angry, fearful, depressed, or guilty • Custodial mother/father overwhelmed • Behavior problems • Peer relationships suffer/change • Sometimes negative effects are lasting • Usually a 1-2 year adjustment
Learning Objectives • Why might family abuse occur? • What can be done to reduce spouse abuse and child abuse?
Family Violence • Child abuse: Much unreported • Sexual abuse • Spouse Abuse • Most common worldwide • Elder Abuse and Neglect • Cognitive impairment a risk factor
The Abuser • Typical child abuser • Young, single, poor, unemployed mother • Cycle of abuse • Often a battered woman • Low self-esteem • Unrealistic expectations
The Abused • Target Child • Hyperactive, difficult • Often disabled or sickly • Parent feels powerless • Parent feels threatened
Responses to distressed peers observed in abused and non-abused toddlers in day care. Abused children distinguish themselves by a lack of concern and a tendency to become upset, angry, and aggressive when other children cry.
The Context of Abuse • Life changes • Poverty • A violent society • Lack of social support
Effects of Family Violence • Physical damage to abused • Brain damage – shaken baby syndrome • Child behavior problems common • Social and cognitive skills deficient • Academic problems common • Lack of normal empathy – young children • Emotional development disturbed • Problematic for normal development
Empowerment training for low-income mothers under stress reduces harsh parenting practices, especially among mothers who are the most at risk of being abusive because their babies had medical problems or were born prematurely.