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In Event: Special Poster Session 05 with Continental Breakfast Reception
In Poster Session: PS 05 - Ethnic and Racial Issues Section
Chinese parents tend to be more controlling, coercive, and punitive compared to their Western counterparts, even after their migration to a Western society (Pomerantz & Wang, 2009). However, Chinese immigrant parents in the U.S. also increase their endorsement of warmth, reasoning, and autonomy-granting practices, which are traditionally thought to be more valued in Western cultures, and engage in a mixture of parenting emphasized in both Chinese and Western cultures (e.g., Cheah et al., 2015). Researchers have called for more person-centered approaches to further understand the complexities in Chinese immigrant mothers’ parenting (Kim et al., 2013). Furthermore, individual, relational, and contextual factors, including psychological functioning, martial relationships, life hassles, and cultural values have been found to be associated with harsh and controlling parenting (e.g., Li et al., 2011). In turn, harsh and controlling parenting is associated with more aggression in children (Chen & Raine, 2018). By adopting a person-centered approach, we aimed to: (1) identify latent parenting profiles among Chinese immigrant mothers with preschool children in the U.S., (2) assess possible personal, relational, and contextual correlates of the derived parenting profiles, and (3) examine child outcomes associated with the different parenting profiles longitudinally.
First-generation Chinese immigrant mothers (N = 158; M = 37.99 years, SD=4.76) with preschoolers (M = 4.54 years, SD = .90) in Maryland, U.S. participated at two time points of data collection. At Time 1 (T1), mothers reported on their: demographic information, maintenance of Asian cultural values, endorsement of Western cultural values, life stress, psychological well-being, and marital satisfaction. Mothers also reported on 6 Western parenting dimensions (i.e., warmth, reasoning, autonomy-granting, physical coercion, verbal hostility, and punitive) and 3 indigenous Asian parenting dimensions (i.e., directiveness, psychological control, and overprotection). Teachers rated children’s aggression at T1 and Time 2 (T2), 6-months later.
Three parenting profiles emerged from the latent profile analysis: Supportive, Easy-Going, and Tiger mothers (see Table 1 and Figure 1 for descriptors of each group). Tiger mothers reported highest levels of parenting stress, poorest psychological well-being, and lowest marital satisfaction, but did not differ in their levels of maintenance of Asian values or endorsement of Western values, compared to supportive and easy-going mothers. Furthermore, children of tiger mothers were rated as more aggressive at T2 compared to children with supportive and easy-going mothers.
The three parenting profiles demonstrated the co-existence of childrearing practices traditionally valued in both Chinese and Western cultures among U.S. Chinese immigrant mothers (Kim et al., 2013). Tiger mothers were the smallest group and engaged in the most controlling and harsh parenting. These mothers reported more life stress, poorer psychological well-being, and lower marital quality, but did not differ on their cultural orientations compared to other mothers, indicating that tiger parenting may result from various life difficulties rather than a parenting style valued by traditional Chinese cultures (Cheah et al., 2009). Further, children with tiger mothers were affected by these adversities and their mothers’ harsh and hostile parenting behaviors, and consequently displayed higher level of aggression with peers (Kawabata et al., 2011).