Interpretations of parental control by Asian immigrant and European American youth.J Fam Psychol. 2009 Jun; 23(3):342-54.JF
Although studies have reported ethnic and cultural differences in the effects of parenting on adolescent well-being, rarely have they included specific examinations of the cultural processes underlying these differences. This study examined adolescents' affective interpretations of parents' control (i.e., feelings of anger toward control) and how these interpretations may moderate the relationship between control and adolescents' behavioral adjustment. The study comprised 1,085 immigrant youth of Chinese, Korean, and Filipino descent, and also European American youth from high schools in the greater Los Angeles area. Differences were found between European American and Asian immigrant youth in the effects of both behavioral control and psychological control. Furthermore, among European Americans only, as adolescents' feelings of anger increased, the beneficial consequences of behavioral control decreased, whereas the negative effects of psychological control on behavior problems decreased. The results suggest that feeling anger toward parents' use of psychological control may serve a protective function for European American youth but not for Asian immigrant youth. In contrast, feeling angry about behavioral control seems to reduce the beneficial consequences of control among European Americans but not Asian immigrants.