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date: 20 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

One of the driving theories of the development of child antisocial behavior is Patterson’s model of parent-child coercion. Although Patterson hypothesized that coercive processes are established beginning in early childhood, few studies have sought to understand its developmental precursors in early childhood. Even fewer studies have attempted to examine factors that might compromise parenting quality and lead to coercive parent-child interactions during early childhood. One factor repeatedly shown to compromise parenting quality is parental depression. As such, this chapter focuses on how depression among mothers and alternative caregivers, including fathers, is associated with the early onset of coercive family dynamics. The results of the current study have implications for understanding the genesis of coercive processes and for the design of early prevention programs, affirming the importance of including maternal depression in our prevention models.

Keywords: maternal depression, parent-child interaction, dyadic coercion, antisocial behavior, early childhood

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