Temperament, parental personality and parenting stress in relation to socio-emotional development at 51 months
This study examined the relevance of infant temperament, parent personality and parenting stress for children’s socio-emotional development, looking in addition for any differences between mothers and fathers. Participants, from a community sample, were 410 mothers and fathers reporting their personality (NEO Personality Inventory), child temperament in the first (Infant Characteristics Questionnaire) and second (Toddler Behavior Assessment Questionnaire) years, parenting stress to 36 months (Parenting Stress Index Short Form) and child behaviour at 51 months (Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire). Difficult toddler temperament was associated with more externalizing and internalizing problems. Higher paternal extraversion was associated with more prosocial behaviour whereas lower maternal extraversion was associated with more internalizing problems. For both parents, describing a dysfunctional parent–child relationship was related to more externalizing problems and to less prosocial behaviour, for fathers also to more internalizing problems, which associated for mothers with more parental distress.