Sex Roles

, Volume 28, Issue 9–10, pp 569–582 | Cite as

Parental self-esteem and behavior problems in children: Similarities between mothers and fathers

  • Laura L. Finken
  • Paul R. Amato


The relationship between parental self-esteem and behavior problems in children was investigated using 1624 married couple's responses from the National Survey of Families and Households. The sample was weighted to be nationally representative in terms of race and ethnicity. It was hypothesized that the existence of behavior problems among children would be associated with low self-esteem among parents and that the parent's gender, child's gender, parents' gender role attitudes, and parental employment would moderate this relationship. The results indicated that parental self-esteem is negatively associated with behavior problems in children. However, none of the moderating variables had a significant impact. This suggests that the relationship between parental self-esteem and behavior problems among children is robust and does not vary appreciably with the gender of the parent, the gender of the child, the attitudes of the parent, or the employment of the parent.


Behavior Problem Social Psychology Gender Role National Survey Married Couple 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laura L. Finken
    • 1
  • Paul R. Amato
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Nebraska—LincolnUSA

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