Parental support programs and paternal stress: An exploratory study

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The purpose of this exploratory study was to examine the effects of a parent support program designed specifically for fathers on the stress they were experiencing in their paternal roles. Subjects were 54 fathers (27 treatment, 27 control) and their preschool-aged children. Measures of the fathers' perceived parental stress were taken on a pretest-posttest basis using the Parenting Stress Index (PSI). Analyses revealed significant program effects on their sense of competence, social isolation, and depression subscales of the PSI parent domain. No program effects were evident on PSI child domain subscales. Correlational analyses indicated the fathers' educational levels and family incomes to be the only demographic variables significantly related to PSI parent and child domain subscales. Implications are drawn from the findings for future research on paternal stress, and for the development of support programs for fathers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)137-149
Number of pages13
JournalEarly Childhood Research Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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