Pub. Date:
Brown & Benchmark
Understanding Parenting / Edition 1

Understanding Parenting / Edition 1

by Michael Jaffe


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This book provides readers with a research-based examination of the parenting process that emphasizes the development of children in families from infancy through young adulthood. Writing with a clear, convivial tone, Dr. Jaffe conveys the excitement and challenge of child-rearing using his rich experiences as a researcher, family therapist, and parent. Comprehensive coverage of parenting topics include the nature and origin of parental competence, Delayed first time parenting, parenting children with disabilities, marital conflict and divorce, grandparenting, adoption, parenting biracial children, parent training, and family violence.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780697078902
Publisher: Brown & Benchmark
Publication date: 10/28/1990
Edition description: Older Edition
Pages: 432

Table of Contents

Each chapter closes with "Summary," "Glossary," and "Thought Questions."

1. Parenting in Perspective.
Meeting Mark's Mom.
The Decision To Parent.
Family Life: Contentment and Chaos.
Why Have Children?
All Kinds of Reasons for Having Children.
Box1-1—Why Do Men Become Fathers?
Four Goals of Parenting.
The History of Childhood.
Children In Today's World.
Spotlight: Poverty and Parenting.
Research on Parenting.
Why Study Parenting?
* Parenting Research
* Research Example 1
* Research Example 2.
Box 1-2—Parenting Across Cultures.
Who Influences Whom In Families.
Combined Influences.

2. The Transition to Parenthood.
The Transition to Parenthood.
Mothering and Fathering
* Changes in Marital Satisfaction
* Marital Transitions and the Quality of Parenting.
Stages of Parenthood.
Assisted Reproduction Technologies: Where Do Babies Come From?
Effects on Children?
Spotlight—Should Parents be Allowed to Select the Gender (or Height, Hair Color, or Eye Color) of Their Child?
Realistic Expectations About Parenting.
Realistic Expectations About Ourselves.
Physical Discomfort and Psychological Stress
* Expectant Fathers.
Prepared Childbirth.
Gentle Birth.
Parent-Infant Bonding.
Other Factors That Influence Bonding.
Spotlight—Breast feeding.
Box 2-1—Multiple Births.
Postpartum Adjustment and Depression.
Pregnancy Loss.
Sudden InfantDeath Syndrome.
Spotlight—Latecomers—Delayed First Time Childbearing.
Foster Families: Whose Child Am I?

3. The Process of Parenting.
Do Parents Make A Difference?
Parental Competence.
Parental Psychological Functioning
* Parental Emotional State and Expression
* Parenting Interaction style.
Spotlight Small Moments Model of Development.
* Parental Discipline Style
* How Parents Think and Reason About Parenting.
* Parental Consistency and Flexibility
* Parental Self-Efficacy.
Factors Associated With Parental Competence.
Experiences in Family of Origin
* Parent Education
* Stress and Parenting.
Fathers and Daughters.
Fathers as Primary Caregivers.
Comparisons of Father's and Mother's Parenting Styles.
* Play
* Interest and Interaction
* Discipline.

4. Marriage, Divorce, and New Family Configurations.
Parents With Partners.
Marital and Family Conflict.
Spotlight—Two Styles of Marriage: Male and Female.
Separation and Divorce.
Custody Arrangements: "Bests Interests of the Child"
* Joint Custody
* Stages of the Divorce Process
* Noncustodial Fathers
* Visitation: Parenting From A Distance
* Effects of Divorce on Children.
Interventions for Children of Divorce.
Single Mothering.
Children of Single Parents.
Single Custodial Fathers.
* Stepmothering
* Stepfamily Research
* Parenting Stepchildren.
Grandparents as Disciplinarians.
Spotlight—Children of Gay and Lesbian Parents.

5. Parental Authority, Child Compliance, and Parenting Styles.
How Do Parents Perceive Their Children?
Roots of Parent-Child Conflict.
Understanding Noncompliance.
Analysis of Misbehavior.
Parental Requests and Compliance.
Cultural Perspective: How Chinese and Japanese Parents Raise Their Children.
Their Well-Behaved Children.
Internalization of Parental Standards.
Children's Conceptions of Adult Authority.
Adolescents' Conceptions of Parental Authority.
No Simple Formula for Handling Discipline Encounters.
The Discipline Dance.
Spotlight—Chance Encounters.
Dimensions of Discipline.
Baumrind's Model of Discipline Styles.
Parenting Style and Parenting Practices.
Spotlight—A Team Approach to Discipline.
Power and Punishment in Parenting.
Hoffman's Model of Parental Power Assertion.

6. Changing Children's Behavior.
Mark #1.
Infant Distress.
Setting Limits for Older Infants and Toddlers.
Standards of Acceptable Behavior
* Promoting Rule-Following Behavior
* Discipline Strategies.
Parenting Infants.
* Crying
* Toilet Training.
The Role of Operant Conditioning.
Carol and the Cookie
* Mark #2
* Strategic Use of Reinforcers
* Differential Reinforcement of Other Behavior (DRO)
* Reservations About The Use of Operant Conditioning
* Types of Reinforcers.
Spotlight—Anatomy of a Tantrum.
Using Social Reinforcement
* Mark #3
* Mark #4
* Activity Reinforcers
* Tangible (Token) Reinforcers
* Using Reinforcers Judiciously.
Natural and Logical Consequences.
Eric's "Sick Day"
* Encouraging Self-Reliance
* Mark #5.
Observational Learning.
Mark #6
* Defining Punishment
* Using Punishment Effectively
* Side-Effects of Punishment
* Learning To Avoid Detection
* Overcorrection
* Should Parents Use Corporal Punishment?
Spotlight—Time Out From Reinforcement.

7. Communication and Relationships In Families.
Mark #7.
Parental Sensitivity and Responsiveness.
Parental Understanding, Acceptance, and Patience.
Mark #8
* Mark #8 Addendum.
Communication Skills.
Mark # 9
* Attention
* Mark #10
* Sympathetic (Active, Reflective) Listening
* Mark #11
* Acknowledging Feelings
* Encouraging Emotional Expressiveness
* Nonverbal Communication
* Descriptive Praise
* Constructive Feedback
* Exploring Alternatives and Owning Problems
* I Messages
* Apologizing.
Communication Pitfalls.
Spotlight—Parental Support and Expressions of Physical Affection.
Family Arguments, Family Meetings.
Children In Families.
Family Size
* Birth Order
* Single Child Families
* Sibling Status Effects.
Sibling Ambivalence/Conflict
* Parents and Sibling Conflict
* Differential Treatment and Perceived Favoritism.
Spotlight—Nonshared Family Environments.
Parents and Friends.
Spotlight—Family Arguments.

8. Self-Concept, Self-Esteem, and Gender Identity.
Mark #12.
Spotlight—Biracial Children's Self-Concept.
Erikson's Point of View
* The Coopersmith Study
* Carl Rogers' Point of View.
Spotlight—The Development of Empathy and Altruism.
Mark #13
* Empathy and Altruism
* Promoting Empathy and Altruism in Children.
Gender-Related Differences and Parenting: "Is It A Boy or Is It A Girl?"
Parenting Sons and Daughters
* Gender Identity and Gender-Typing
* Learning Models
* Kohlberg's Cognitive-Developmental Model
* Bandura's Social-Cognitive Model
* Cross-gender Behavior
* Androgyny
* Sexual Orientation.
Spotlight—Children's Household Work.
Promoting Cooperation in Household Work.

9. Adjustment, Stress, and Coping.
Spotlight—Encouraging Honest Behavior.
Childhood Fears.
The Development of Childhood Fears
* Parent Handling of Childhood Fears.
Shame, Embarrassment, and Pride.
Learned Helplessness.
Separation From Parents
* Birth of a Sibling
* Parental Divorce.
Spotlight—Separation Anxiety and Stranger Distress.
Coping Ability
* Humor and Coping
* Resilient Children.
Understanding and Coping With Death.
Children's Limited Understanding of Death
* When A Parent Dies
* Helping Children Cope With Death
* When A Child Dies
* Adults Loss of a Parent.
Spotlight—Letter To A Dying Father.

10. Parenting and Achievement.
Mark #13.
Home and Family Factors in Achievement.
Verbal Interaction and Stimulation
* Parent-Child Relationship
* Parental Beliefs and Expectations about Achievement
* Parental Style of Discipline
* Summarizing Family Influences.
Too Much Too Soon?: Creating Superkids.
Early Schooling.
The Process of Schooling.
Mark #14: The Book Report.
Spotlight—Asian-American Superachievers?
Cultural Perspective—The Japanese Mother.
Reading and Writing.
Parental Involvement in Schooling.
Handling School-Related Problems.
Achievement and Underachievement in Adolescents.
The Case of Peter.
Encouraging Creative Expression.
Parents as Playmates
* Gender Differences in Play and Toy Preferences.
Effects on Children
* What's A Parent To Do?

11. Parenting Adolescents.
Adolescence as a Stage of Development.
Family Relationships and Conflict.
Parenting and Peer Group Influence.
Cognitive Development.
Adolescent Adjustment.
Preparing for Independence.
Adolescent Values.
Risk-Taking Behavior.
Adolescent Sexuality.
Adolescent Sexual Activity, Pregnancy, and Child Care
* Spotlight A Mixed Message For Teenage Fathers
* Spotlight Adolescents, Parents, and Birth Control
* "Everyone Else Is Doing It": Guidelines for Parents Teaching Sexual Responsibility.
Adolescent Drug Use.
Adolescent Suicide: A Permanent Solution To A Temporary Problem.
Signs of Suicide: "I Might As Well Be Dead."
Spotlight—Empty Nests That Do Not Always Remain Empty.
Return to the Nest
* Residential Setting During the College Years.

12. Special Children, Special Parents.
Interview with Parents of a Down Syndrome Child.
Who Is Special?
Spotlight—What It Means to Have Juliet.
Juliet Redux.
Parenting Children with Special Needs.
Case History
* Family Life Cycle Model
* Family Stressors.
Parenting Children With Acute and Chronic Illness.
Parenting Down Syndrome Children.
Box 12-1—The Americans with Disabilities Act.
Spotlight—Children's Reactions to Disabled Peers.
Parenting Autistic Children.
Parenting Children With Learning Disabilities.
Parenting Gifted Children.
Spotlight—Blaming Mothers for Children's Problems.
Prevention of Psychological Problems.

13. Family Violence, Child Abuse, and Neglect.
Family Violence.
Families With Marital Violence
* Parental Discipline Style.
Spotlight—Bullies and Their Victims.
The Victims of Bullies.
Child Abuse.
Physical Abuse
* Effects of Abuse on Children
* Fathers and Abuse
* Psychological Maltreatment (Emotional Abuse)
* Breaking the Cycle of Abuse.
Sexual Abuse.
Effects of Sexual Abuse
* Causes of Sexual Abuses
* Child Care and Sexual Abuse
* Assessment of Sexual Abuse
* Prevention of Sexual Abuse.
Child Neglect.
Family, Antisocial Behavior, and Delinquency.
Prevention and Treatment.
Spotlight—Do Toy Guns Encourage Aggression?

14. Selected Topics.
Topic # 1—Parent-Support and Training Programs.
Topic # 2—Having It All?: Dual-Career Parenting.
Maternal Employment
* Children In Dual-Career Families
* Evaluation.
Topic # 3—Day-Care Programs.
Day Care For Infants
* Evaluation.
Topic # 4—Children in Self Care.
Effects on Children
* Alternatives to Self Care.



Appendix A: Family Systems Theory.

Appendix B: Freud's Psychodynamic Theory.

Appendix C: Erikson's Psychosocial Theory.


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