Perceptions of Iranian parents towards the paternal role in raising adolescent children

Nurs Health Sci. 2018 Dec;20(4):479-485. doi: 10.1111/nhs.12538. Epub 2018 Jul 3.


In Iran, as in other nations, adolescence can be a challenging period for both parents and their children. Typically, mothers assume the main role of parenting, which can have a negative impact either directly or indirectly on paternal involvement, or conversely, play a positive role of mediation between fathers and their adolescent children. In the present study, we report on a qualitative study conducted in 2016 that explored the perceptions of Iranian parents toward the paternal role in raising adolescent children. Twenty three mothers and fathers of adolescent children were interviewed to explore their views and experiences with paternal roles in raising adolescent children. Four themes emerged from the data: (i) limited father-child interactions; (ii) mother-led parenting; (iii) father-child conflict; and (iv) united front parenting. The findings suggest that mothers maintain a prime role in parenting, but that the involvement of fathers can have a negative or positive impact on adolescent development, depending on the level and quality of that involvement. Strategies need to be explored for how parents can best support one another to engage in the development of adolescent children.

Keywords: Iranian; adolescent; parenting; paternal role; qualitative study.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Female
  • Gender Identity*
  • Humans
  • Iran
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Perception*
  • Qualitative Research