Exploring Mothers' and Fathers' Relationships with Sons Versus Daughters: Links to Adolescent Adjustment in Mexican Immigrant Families

Kimberly A. Updegraff, Melissa Y. Delgado, Lorey A. Wheeler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Scopus citations


Drawing on ecological and gender socialization perspectives, this study examined mothers' and fathers' relationships with young adolescents, exploring differences between mothers and fathers, for sons versus daughters, and as a function of parents' division of paid labor. Mexican immigrant families (N∈=∈162) participated in home interviews and seven nightly phone calls. Findings revealed that mothers reported higher levels of acceptance toward adolescents and greater knowledge of adolescents' daily activities than did fathers, and mothers spent more time with daughters than with sons. Linkages between parent-adolescent relationship qualities and youth adjustment were moderated by adolescent gender and parents' division of paid labor. Findings revealed, for example, stronger associations between parent-adolescent relationship qualities and youth adjustment for girls than for boys.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)559-574
Number of pages16
JournalSex Roles
Issue number7-8 SPEC. ISS.
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2009



  • Adjustment
  • Adolescence
  • Mexican American
  • Parent-adolescent relationships

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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