Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Caucasian teenagers more damaged by family change than African-American peers

Date:
April 26, 2010
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
A new study reveals that teenagers who have experienced several family changes are more likely to engage in delinquent behavior.

A new study from the Journal of Marriage and Family reveals that teenagers who have experienced several family changes are more likely to engage in delinquent behaviour, become sexually active early, or become parents outside of marriage, than kids who have always lived in the same family arrangement (whether with married parents or a single parent).

The findings show that white adolescents, compared to their African-American peers, are more likely to become sexually active earlier, and experience a nonmarital birth.

In turn, adolescents who engage in delinquent behaviour or become unmarried parents are more likely to leave school earlier, have less success in the workplace, and are less likely to form stable romantic relationships than their peers.

The researchers weigh these familial pressures with outside factors, seeing how both work to form the teen's long-term identity. The absence of quality relationships with other adults and a lack of connection to one's neighbourhood, school, or community can directly affect the teen's social choices and consequences.

For African-American adolescents, there is evidence that economic hardship can dampen the trauma caused by changes in the family.

Study author Paula Fomby says, "We were interested in what distinguished white teenagers from black teenagers, and entertained various explanations offered by other research and theories. Our study reveals two findings. One, the sheer number of adults that are around to give teenagers or their parents support varies by ethnic or racial group. Additionally, adjustment to economic hardship trumps the growing pains introduced by other family changes such as divorce or remarriage."

The researchers followed the lives of approximately 8,000 American teenagers from their adolescence in the mid-90s to young adulthood (over the course of seven years). The teenagers answered questions about their school activities, illegal behaviour, and romantic lives. Their parents provided information about their own relationship histories.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Paula Fomby, Stefanie Mollborn, Christie A. Sennott. Race/Ethnic Differences in Effects of Family Instability on Adolescents' Risk Behavior. Journal of Marriage and Family, 2010; 72 (2): 234 DOI: 10.1111/j.1741-3737.2010.00696.x

Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "Caucasian teenagers more damaged by family change than African-American peers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100426105647.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2010, April 26). Caucasian teenagers more damaged by family change than African-American peers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100426105647.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "Caucasian teenagers more damaged by family change than African-American peers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100426105647.htm (accessed August 21, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids' Drawings At Age 4 Linked To Intelligence At Age 14

Kids' Drawings At Age 4 Linked To Intelligence At Age 14

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) A study by King's College London says there's a link between how well kids draw at age 4 and how intelligent they are later in life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins