This study examined parenting and peer predictors of physical dating violence perpetration during early adolescence and tested moderation among these predictors and gender.
Participants were 2,824 ethnically diverse sixth-grade students with a recent boyfriend/girlfriend who was part of a multisite, longitudinal investigation of the development and prevention of violence among middle school students.
Those students who reported having a boyfriend/girlfriend reported significantly more drug use and delinquent activity and were more likely to be male.
Twenty-nine percent of youth with a boyfriend/girlfriend reported perpetrating physical aggression against their boyfriend/girlfriend.
Parenting and peer variables were significant predictors of physical dating violence.
However, gender moderated the association between parenting practices and physical dating violence, with parental monitoring inversely linked to dating violence for boys and parent support for nonaggression inversely linked to dating violence for girls.
Parents of different families often see their roles differently.
These differing expectations can become sources of difficulty for teens and their parents.
However, these two sets of rules may conflict with each other (i.e., one set of rules is more strict or more lenient than the other) leaving teens to judge which set of rules should apply.
Teens should be instructed to follow the more strict set of rules when they are in doubt.
So, although it can be a period of conflict between parent and child, the teen years are also a time to help kids grow into the distinct individuals they will become. Everybody's different — there are early bloomers, late arrivers, speedy developers, and slow-but-steady growers.
In other words, there's a wide range of what's considered normal.
The journal especially welcomes empirically rigorous papers that take policy implications seriously.