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Coparenting in the feeding context: perspectives of fathers and mothers of preschoolers

  • Cin Cin TanEmail author
  • Sarah E. Domoff
  • Megan H. Pesch
  • Julie C. Lumeng
  • Alison L. Miller
Original Article

Abstract

Purpose

This study examined how fathers and mothers coparent around child feeding.

Methods

Father–mother pairs (N = 30) of preschool-aged children (M child age = 4.1 years old) participated in joint or group interview sessions.

Results

Three themes emerged from the qualitative analysis: (1) couples’ division of labor regarding feeding tasks seemed to align with stereotypical gender roles; (2) couples noted that they attempted healthier family eating habits in comparison to families of origin and recognized the influence of extended family on their attempts at healthier feeding; (3) couples agreed on the importance of family mealtime, routines, and healthy meals, yet disagreed on strategies to limit unhealthy foods and achieve harmonious family meals.

Conclusions

This study identified processes of coparenting and child feeding areas that were particularly challenging to manage among parents, which could be important targets for childhood obesity interventions.

Level of evidence

V, descriptive study.

Keywords

Father Mother Coparenting Feeding Child Couple 

Notes

Acknowledgements

All phases of this study were supported by the National Institute of Health (NIH) Grant Number R03HD086430.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

40519_2019_730_MOESM1_ESM.docx (20 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 20 kb)
40519_2019_730_MOESM2_ESM.docx (21 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 20 kb)

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Human Growth and DevelopmentUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ToledoOhioUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyCentral Michigan UniversityMt. PleasantUSA
  4. 4.Department of PediatricsUniversity of Michigan Medical SchoolAnn ArborUSA
  5. 5.Department of Nutritional SciencesUniversity of Michigan School of Public HealthAnn ArborUSA
  6. 6.Department of Health Behavior and Health EducationUniversity of Michigan School of Public HealthAnn ArborUSA

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