Absence of Paternal Involvement and Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

" (Bean, 2006) Bean notes that a "dramatic decline in the influence of father involvement has been shown to be correlated with fathers' maintaining a residence other than that of their children." (2006)

According to the work entitled: "Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency" developmental pathways of adolescent delinquency has been examined by researcher "through both longitudinal research and meta-analyses." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) Resulting from these empirical investigations are "numerous insights...key indicators and predictors of behavior of those youths who engage and those who persist in delinquent behavior." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) According to this work there have been a number of studies which had made identification of characteristic patterns of parent-child relationships that are strongly associated with juvenile delinquency." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) the work of Juby and Farrington (2001); Patterson and Stouthamer-Loeber (1984); and Steinberg (1987) state that "evidence clearly demonstrates the influence that parent-child relationships have on youths engaging in delinquent behavior." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) Related is the work of Shields and Clark (1995) in a study that collected data on 480 youths and their families and found that "adolescents who rated family cohesion in the mid-range between 'disconnected' and 'enmeshed' reported the lowest rates of delinquent behavior. In contrast, adolescents reporting the highest rates of delinquent acts tended to characterize their family cohesion as predominantly 'disconnected' with very little involvement among family members and a large degree of personal separateness and independence." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) Family communication patterns are also a factor that researchers have attributed as a factor related to juvenile delinquency." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) This work further relates that: "Sensation seeking, defined as a personality tendency to seek strong sensations and experiences that entail various forms of risk, is on notable individual factor receiving particular attention in research." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) the work of Hansen and Breivik (2001) is related which made an examination of the relationship between sensation seeking and risk-taking behavior among 360 junior high school age students. Zuckerman's 'My Opnion II' was used to quantify the tendency of a youth toward sensation seeking youths that were engaged in positive risk behaviors such as high risk sports vs. those youths that were engaged in negative risk behaviors such as criminal activity and drug use and stated that hypothesis that "sensation seeking youths would be more likely to engage in delinquent activity when opportunities to engage in positive risk behaviors are unavailable." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) Findings are stated to have revealed "high correlations between sensation seeking and risk behaviors with the majority of the sample endorsing more positive risk behaviors compared to negative ones." (Theoretical Models of Juvenile Delinquency, nd) the work of Furman and Shaffer (2003) relate several development tasks faced by adolescents which include:

1) Identity development;

2) the transformation of family relationships;

3) the development of close relationships with peers;

4) the development of sexuality; and 5) Scholastic achievement and career planning.

It is stated that these tasks involve the individual as well as the systems in which the individual exists including the family, peer group and school. (Brooks, 2007; paraphrased) Brooks relates the work of Bronfenbrenner "The Ecology of Human Development (1979) he identified four systems levels which are the:

1) the microsystem;

2) Mesosystem;

3) Exosystem; and the 4) Macrosystem and holds that these all interaction in a multi-directional manner. The following figure illustrates the model as proposed by Bronfenbrenner.

Bronfenbrenner's Ecological Model

Source: Brooks (2007)

The model of Bronfenbrenner (1977, 1979) is one that is not as concerned with human development as it is with the contexts in which development takes place. The implication stated by Bronfenbrenner is that development is most "influenced from the outside to the inside; that is, influence is more salient from the major culture through the exosystem and mesosystem, to the microsystem, otherwise known as the developing person." (Brooks, 2007; p. 10) Advocated by Bronfenbrenner is that in research from an ecological standpoint the 'principal main effects are likely to be interactions between systems." (Brook, 2007; p. 10) Brooks relates that: "Rodgers (1995) found that parental monitoring, parental support, parental values, fathers' psychological control, and mother's communication were significantly related to adolescent risk-taking behavior." Additionally, Herring (1985) is stated by Brooks (2007) to have found that: "...as a perception of family cohesion increased, positive increases were noted in more conservative sexual values and attitudes." (p.45) Brooks (2007) states that: "In particular, the role of a father figure seems pivotal in influencing teen girls' engagement in sexual behavior." (p. 45)

Brooks relates as well the study of Blum and Mmari (2005) "...meta-analysis of the developing country literature found that of the sixteen studies which examined the association between family structure and sexual experience among adolescents, nine found that when adolescents live with both parents, they were less likely to engage in sex than those who only lived with one parent or lived with someone other than their biological parent. Additionally two of these studies specifically measured whether the biological father was present in the home and found that among females, the presence of a father at home during childhood and adolescence was independently associated with a later sexual debut." (Blum and Mmari, 2005; as cited in Brooks, 2007) Brooks relates that Ellis and colleagues (2003) made an investigation into the affect of the absence of the father on: "early sexual activity and teenage Pregnancy in longitudinal studies (over a five-year span) in the U.S. And New Zealand. After controlling for covariates, such as externalizing behavior problems, mother's age at first birth, race, socio-economic status, parental monitoring, and more, there was stronger and more consistent evidence for effects of fathers' absence on early sexual activity and teenage pregnancy than on other behavioral problems (Ellis et al., 2000). Rodgers' (1995) dissertation adds that fathers' psychological control predicted the likelihood of sexual risk taking among adolescent females in a logistic regression. Finally, Lonning's (1993) dissertation research investigated the strength of father-daughter relationships and the impact those relationships had on the sexual activity of the daughter in nearly 200 female subjects. A significant relationship was found between father-daughter relationships and onset of consensual sexual intercourse (Lonning, 1993). In the current study, family form is included in a checklist format with other demographic items. " (Brooks, 2007; p. 47) the presence of the father further relates to another primary element in the ecological model, which is the 'socio-economic status' (SES) in that which determines the risk taking behavior of the adolescent. Brooks (2007) states: "Of interest is that risk takers, in general, are disproportionately likely to be economically disadvantaged." (Harvey and Spigner, 1995; as cited in Brooks, 2007; p. 48)

Parent's education levels are stated to have been found to be: "...related to their teenagers' behaviors." (Brooks, 2007; p. 48) Findings are stated by Koss (1985) and related by Brooks (2007) that "children whose parents had less than a 12th grade education were 5.7 times more likely to have initiated sexual intercourse and children whose parents had a high school education or equivalent were 7.0 times more likely to have initiated sexual intercourse compared to those children whose parents had a college level education." (Brooks, 2007) Parental supervision is identified in the work of Brooks (2007) to be "a significant factor in understanding the variation in initiation of sexual activity among adolescents in the United States and elsewhere. Brooks cites the work of Hansen et al. (1987); Hogan and Kitagawa, (1985) and Meschke and Silbereisen (1997) and states that "greater monitoring and less permissiveness are associated with delays in sexual debut, less frequent sexual intercourse, less risky behavior, fewer sexual partners and increased condom use among adolescents." Brooks cites Bynum (1999); Miller, Forehand and Kotchick (1999) and Romer et al. (1994, 1999) and states that permissive parental attitudes are related to early sexual debut." Brooks cites Metzler, Noell and Biglan (1994); Rose et al. (2005); and Small and Luster (1994). Brooks (2007) relates: "Rose and colleagues (2005) concluded in their study of sexual attitudes of fifth graders that early adolescent's families and caregivers play an important role in delay of early sexual activities. Parental monitoring is also emerging as a consistent factor in reducing teen pregnancy risk." The study of Crosby et al. (2001) "reported that their parents generally knew who they were with, were more likely to be consistent dual-contraceptive users." (Brooks, 2007) the work of Donenberg, Wilson, Emerson and Bryant (2002) is stated to have found that the actual monitoring of the parents may not be "as important as the adolescents perception of her parent's monitoring. As with other variables, perceptions of behavior seems to have as much an impact as the actual behavior." (Brooks, 2007; p. 53) Brooks states that Dorenberg, Wilson Emersen and Bryant (2002) further reported that: "...when parental permissiveness was perceived as high, girls, but not boys, reported increased sexual risk…

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