Absence of Paternal Involvement and Sexual Risk Term Paper

Pages: 21 (5319 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 22  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Children

¶ … Absence of Paternal Involvement and Sexual Risk Taking Behavior in Adolescent Females

Influence of Father Involvement on Child Development




Emotional Development

Social Development

Father Involvement and Female Adolescent Sexual Risk Behaviors

Measures of Father Involvement


The objective of this work is to conduct a literature review on the correlation between the absence of paternal involvement and sexual risk taking behaviors in adolescent females. This review will serve to inform the reader about the implications across the life course and will further make connections with regard to poverty, race, gender and will assess whether their things continue through adulthood and what role that social forces play in this topic, the cultural influence, impact on education, incarceration rates and so forth.


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The work of Brooks (2007) states the fact that adolescence "is a period characterized by a high frequency of risk behaviors, many of which have negative outcomes." Brooks states that the attitudes that adolescents have regarding sexual behaviors are likely to influence the behavior of the adolescent and determine whether the adolescent engages in risky sexual behaviors. The work of Harris Duncan and Boisjoly (2002) states that: "...adolescents possess the cognitive abilities to formulate rational behavioral intentions based on perceived attitudes about the risk and benefits associated with engaging in such behavior." (p. 1010)


The purpose of this study is to ascertain whether father involvement positively affects sexual risk-taking behavior among adolescent females.


Term Paper on Absence of Paternal Involvement and Sexual Risk Assignment

The significance of this study is the knowledge that will be added to this field of study.


The methodology of this study is qualitative in nature and is accomplished through an extensive review of the literature in this field of study.

BACKGROUND to the STUDY father may be defined as being an 'involved father' if "his relationship with his child can be described as being sensitive, warm, close, friendly, supportive, intimate, nurturing, affectionate, encouraging, comforting and accepting." (Allen & Daly, 2007) Fathers may also be classified as being involved "if their child has developed a strong, secure attachment to them." (Allen & Daly, 2007) There appears to be a traditional perspective that views father involvement in the life of a child as integral to the child's development and behavioral outcomes. The literature reviewed in this study supports this view.


I. Influences of Father Involvement on Child Development

A) Infants: More cognitively competent at six months and score higher on the Bayley Scales of Infant Development. (Pedersen, Rubinstein, & Yarrow, 1979; Pedersen, Anderson, & Kain, 1980; as cited in Allen & Daly, 2007)

B) One-year-of-age: The child continues with a higher cognitive functioning, are better problem solvers as toddlers and have higher IQ's by age three. (Hugent, 1991, Easterbrooks & Goldberg, 1984, Yogman, Kindlan, & Earls, 1995; as cited in Allen & Daly, 2007)

School-aged: Better academic achievers, more likely to get a's, have better quantitative and verbal skills, have higher grade point averages, receive superior grades, or perform a year above their expected age level on academic tests. Are more likely to live in cognitively stimulating homes. (Bing, 1963; Goldstein, 1982; Radin, 1982; Astone & McLanahan, 1991; Blanchard & Biller, 1971; Cooksey & Fondell, 1996; Feldman & Wentzel, 1990; Goldstein, 1982; Gottfried, Gottfriend & Bathurst, 1988; National Center for Education Statistics, 1997; Shinn, 1978; Snarey, 1993; Wentzel & Feldman, 1993; and William, 1997; as cited in Allen & Daly, 2007) More likely to enjoy school, have better attitudes toward school, participate in extracurricular activities, and graduate. They are less likely to fail a grade, have poor attendance or have behavior problems at school. (Aston & McLanahan, 1991; Brown & Rise, 1991; Mosely & Thompson, 1995; National Center for Education Statistics, 1997; and William, 1997; as cited in Allen & Daly, 2007)

II. Emotional Development

Children of involved fathers are stated by Allen & Daly (2007) to be "more likely to demonstrate a greater tolerance for stress and frustration, have superior problem solving and adaptive skills, be more playful, resourceful, skillful, attentive when presented with a problem, and are better able to manage their emotions and impulses in an adaptive manner." Children of involved fathers are further stated by Allen & Daly to be "more likely to demonstrate a greater internal locus of control, have a greater ability to take initiative, use self-direction and control and display less impulsivity." (2007) Allen & Daly furthermore state that young adults who have had nurturing and available father while growing up are "more likely to score high on measures of self acceptance and personal and social adjustment. " (2007) These young adults are further reported to see themselves as "dependable, trusting, practical and friends, be more likely to succeed in their work, and be mentally health. The variable that is most consistently associated with positive life outcomes is the quality of the father child relationship. Children are better off when their relationship with their father is secure, supportive, reciprocal, sensitive, close, nurturing, and warm." (Allen & Daly, 2007)

III. Social Development

Allen & Daly report that involvement of the father is "positively correlated with children's overall social competence, maturity, and capacity for relatedness with others." (2007) Children of involved fathers are furthermore stated to be "more likely to have positive peer relations and be popular and well liked. Their peer relations are typified by less negativity, less aggression, less conflict, more reciprocity, more generosity, and more positive friendship qualities." (Allen & Daly, 2007)

IV. Father Involvement and Female Adolescent Sexual Risk Behaviors

The work of Sarah Allen and Kerry Daly (2007) entitled: "The Effects of Father Involvement: An Updated Research Summary of the Evidence Inventory" presents an updated overview of key trends in the father involvement literature. In terms of cognitive development: 'Infants of highly involved fathers, as measure by amount of interaction including higher levels of play and caregiving activities, are more cognitively competent at 6 months and score higher on the Bayley Scales of Infant Development (Pedersen, Rubinstein & Yarro, 1979; Pedersen, Anderson & Kain, 1980; as cited in Allen and Daly, 2007) by the age of one year these infants "continue to have higher cognitive functioning (Nugent, 1991; as cited in Allen and Daly, 2007) and are better problem solvers by the time they are toddlers (Easterbrooks and Goldberg, 1985; as cited in Allen and Daly, 2007) the work of Matthew Bean entitled: "Understanding Fathers' Roles: An Evidence-Based Practice Guide for Family Therapists" relates that "Several studies show that increased father involvement is associated with decreased delinquency and increased moral development in children. In a recent review of literature on paternal acceptance/rejection, Rohner and Veneziano (2001) found a significant body of research showing that father love is associated negatively with aggression, substance abuse, conduct problems, and delinquency in youth." (2001) in addition: "Later research has replicated the findings of the individual studies cited in Rohner and Veneziano's extensive review of fathering literature, thereby supporting further the conclusion that positive father involvement is associated negatively with children making poor choices." (Bean, 2006) Bean further states that Pleck and Masciadrelli (2004) made a lengthy review of research on paternal involvement in U.S. fathers and state conclusions that "research which controls for mother involvement has shown a correlation between father involvement and adolescent psychological well-being and identity formation." (2006) Bean (2006) notes that research results which emphasize the negative impacts of fathers as poor sex-role models "show also the lack of father involvement to be associated with negative child outcomes. Higher rates of delinquency, early sexual intercourse, and drinking along with reduced rates of school achievement and poor levels of well-being, have been associated with diminished father involvement." (2006) Research with the new emphasis on father involvement in nurturing of children has made comparisons of fathers who are highly involved to those in families where women were the primary nurturer of the children. Research shows that the children in families where fathers were more involved in child care: "...have the same increases in psychological well being, school achievement, and so on that has been found for other dimensions of father involvement. Furthermore, research on father involvement indicates that a lack of father involvement according to the societal prescription leads to increases in delinquency and risk-taking behaviors and an overall decline in mental health and well-being." (Pleck, 2003; as cited in Bean, 2006) Bean relates the work of Hariss, Furstenberg, and Marmer (1998) who conducted a correlational analysis using data from a national survey of children to investigate the influence of fathers over children's life course. They found that children who came from families in which marital conflict and poverty were low and measures of father involvement and parents education were rated higher, were generally more likely to have positive outcomes over their life course." (Bean, 2006) These results have been replicated in other studies that controlled for similar variables and showed that father involvement "and the subsequent improvement in… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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