Objective: As part of a larger, prospective study, the authors examined concurrent and prospective relations among parenting and child antisocial behavior in inner-city boys at high risk for delinquent behavior.
Method: One hundred twenty-six younger brothers (aged 6 to 10 years) of convicted delinquents in New York City and their parents were assessed; 15 months later 112 boys were reassessed. Demographics, parenting, and child diagnosis were examined as they relate to child externalizing behavior problems. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses predicted changes in Externalizing scores from year I parenting.
Results: At years I and II, 22% and 27% of boys, respectively, scored above the clinical cutoff for Externalizing. Controlling for earlier Externalizing, each of three domains of parenting still made significant independent contributions to later Externalizing scores, explaining 17% of the variance. Altogether this model explained 51% of the variance in year II Externalizing scores.
Conclusions: Data support a cumulative risk model, whereby each of several adverse parenting factors further compounds the likelihood of child conduct problems.