Trajectories of physical discipline: early childhood antecedents and developmental outcomes

Child Dev. Sep-Oct 2009;80(5):1385-402. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2009.01340.x.

Abstract

This study examined childhood antecedents and developmental outcomes associated with trajectories of mild and harsh parental physical discipline. Interview, questionnaire, and observational data were available from 499 children followed from ages 5 to 16 and from 258 children in an independent sample followed from ages 5 to 15. Analyses indicated distinct physical discipline trajectory groups that varied in frequency of physical discipline and rate of change. In both samples, family ecological disadvantage differentiated the trajectory groups; in the first sample, early child externalizing also differentiated the groups. Controlling for early childhood externalizing, the minimal/ceasing trajectory groups were associated with the lowest levels of subsequent adolescent antisocial behavior in both samples and with parent-adolescent positive relationship quality in the second sample.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior
  • Adolescent Development*
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / diagnosis
  • Child Behavior Disorders / psychology*
  • Child Development
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Parent-Child Relations*
  • Parenting*
  • Prognosis
  • Punishment*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires