NHM 323. 01
Mothers’ and Fathers’ Parenting Challenges, Strategies, and Resources in Toddlerhood
Bingham, G.E., Han, S., Jeon, H.J., & Kwon, K.A. (2013). Mothers’ and fathers’ parenting challenges, strategies, and resources in toddlerhood. Early Childhood Development and Care, 183(3-4), 415-429.
The purpose of this study was to extend previous research by investigating mothers’ and fathers’ perceptions of parenting challenges and coping/strategies of mothers and fathers of toddlers. To date, only limited evidence is available on whether the parenting experiences of mothers and fathers can be determined by similar set of factors and whether these factors exert similar influences on mothers’ and fathers’ behavior. The researchers used a consensual qualitative research (CQR) method, developed by incorporating various qualitative frameworks including comprehensive process analysis, grounded theory, and phenomenological approach, used to analyze interview transcripts. In general, the results demonstrate that both mothers and fathers were transitioning from traditional gender roles toward co-parenting, as indicated by the remarkable similarities, rather than differences, in their perceived parenting challenges and coping. Parenting stress can be defined as any stress, ranging from daily hassles to chronic life circumstances, that result from children’s difficult characteristics, parents’ perception of parenting incompetence, and lack of resources or social support. Much scholarly attention has been paid to the links between parenting stress and various predictors/outcomes including psychosocial characteristics of parents, parenting behaviors, relationships and children’s developmental outcomes. Only limited research examines parents’ perceptions of sources of stress and useful strategies for coping with this stress. In addition, most parenting stress research has focused on mothers, most likely as a result of the assumption that mothers are more likely to be the primary caretakers and, therefore, experience greater parenting stress. Given increased paternal involvement in parenting in modern families, it is reasonable to expect that fathers who are involved in parenting and daily caregiving routines may experience similar level of parenting stress as that of mothers. Participants of this study were Caucasian, middle class, two-parent families and there were a total of 38 parents with toddlers. Both mothers and fathers completed an initial survey as a baseline procedure then participated in the qualitative interview. The 16 couples came from mid-size college towns and 5 couples came from a large city in the southeastern area of the U.S. All of the participating parents were biological parents and lived with their toddlers in the same household. Researchers used the consensual qualitative research (CQR), developed by incorporating various qualitative frameworks to analyze the interview…