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Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Schudlich, Tina Dawn Du Rocher
Graham, James M.
Interparental conflict (IPC) is an inevitable part of family life which has been linked to child adjustment. Two theories have been proposed to explain this relationship. The emotional security hypothesis represents a direct path by which IPC affects children by threatening their sense of felt security in the interparental relationship. In contrast, the spillover hypothesis suggests that IPC affects children indirectly by influencing parenting practices. The current study extends previous research by examining both of these pathways in families with infants, as well as testing how IPC may contribute to family outcomes. Seventy-four two-parent families of 6- to 14- month-old infants completed a series of questionnaires and laboratory interactions assessing dimensions of IPC, emotional security, parenting and coparenting behaviors, and child and family behaviors. Results provided some support for both the emotional security and spillover hypotheses. Implications for theory and potential future directions for research are discussed.
Western Washington University
Copying of this thesis in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this thesis for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.
Stettler, Nichole, "The relationship between parental conflict and family interactions: the role of emotional security and parenting behaviors" (2010). WWU Masters Thesis Collection. 92.