Parental neglect and overprotection as risk factors in delinquency

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This study examined perceived parental neglect and overprotection as correlates of self‐reported delinquency in 405 male and 387 female Australian secondary school students under the age of 18. Consistent with the research hypotheses, correlations obtained show that perceptions of low care and high protection, from either fathers or mothers, were associated with higher levels of both male and female delinquency. Results from analyses of variance confirm that adolescents reporting the parental style of affectionless control (neglect plus overprotection) were more delinquent than those with optimal parental bonding (care plus permission of independence). A regression analysis including various parental bonding interactions further shows that maternal care was the most important predictor of delinquency, that paternal care was another significant correlate, and that an interaction effect of paternal neglect and overprotection was found among male adolescents. 1994 Australian Psychological Society

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-111
Number of pages5
JournalAustralian Journal of Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994


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