Parental Acculturative Stressors and Adolescent Adjustment Through Interparental and Parent–Child Relationships in Chinese American Families

Yang Hou, Su Yeong Kim, Yijie Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Perpetual foreigner stereotype and bicultural management difficulty are two understudied acculturative stressors frequently experienced by Asian Americans. This study expanded the family stress model to examine how parental experiences of these two acculturative stressors relate to measures of adolescent adjustment (depressive symptoms, delinquent behaviors, and academic performance) during high school and emerging adulthood through interparental and parent–child relationship processes. Participants were 350 Chinese American adolescents (Mage = 17.04, 58 % female) and their parents in Northern California. Path models showed that parental acculturative stressors positively related to parent–child conflict, either directly (for both mother–adolescent and father–adolescent dyads) or indirectly through interparental conflict (for mother–adolescent dyads only). Subsequently, both interparental and parent–child conflict positively related to a sense of alienation between parents and adolescents, which then related to more depressive symptoms, more delinquent behaviors, and lower academic performance in adolescents, for mother–adolescent and father–adolescent dyads. These effects persisted from high school to emerging adulthood. The results highlight the indirect effects of maternal and paternal acculturative stressors on adolescent adjustment through family processes involving interparental and parent–child relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1466-1481
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Youth and Adolescence
Volume45
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Support for this research was provided through awards to Su Yeong Kim from (1) Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development 5R03HD051629-02 (2) Office of the Vice President for Research Grant/Special Research Grant from the University of Texas at Austin (3) Jacobs Foundation Young Investigator Grant (4) American Psychological Association Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs, Promoting Psychological Research and Training on Health Disparities Issues at Ethnic Minority Serving Institutions Grant (5) American Psychological Foundation/Council of Graduate Departments of Psychology, Ruth G. and Joseph D. Matarazzo Grant (6) California Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, Extended Education Fund (7) American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, Massachusetts Avenue Building Assets Fund, and (8) Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development 5R24HD042849-14 Grant awarded to the Population Research Center at The University of Texas at Austin.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Keywords

  • Acculturative stress
  • Adolescent adjustment
  • Chinese American
  • Interparental relationship
  • Parent–child relationship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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