DOI: 10.1177/0272431691111004 ISSN:

The Influence of Parenting Style on Adolescent Competence and Substance Use

Diana Baumrind
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

An overview of the Family Socialization and Developmental Competence longitudinal program of research (FSP) is followed by a presentation of the hypotheses and findings pertaining to family patterns as determinants of adolescent competence, and of types of adolescent substance users. Data include clusters derived from comprehensive ratings of parents and their children completed independently within- and across-time periods at ages 4, 9, and 15 years. At Time 3 (T3), the sample included 139 adolescents and their parents from a predominantly affluent, well-educated, Caucasian population. Parenting types were identified that differ on the bases of commitment and balance of demandingness and responsiveness. Authoritative parents who are highly demanding and highly responsive were remarkably successful in protecting their adolescents from problem drug use, and in generating competence. Authoritative upbringing, although sufficient, is not a necessary condition to produce competent children. Casual recreational drug use was not associated with pathological attributes, either precursive or concurrent, although nonusers showed an increment in competence from Time 2 (T2) to Time 3 (T3).

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