Parental relationship and adolescents’ conceptions of their interaction with significant others

  • Anu Narusk
  • Lea Pulkkinen


Three problems were investigated with a sample of 329 Estonian and 504 Finnish adolescents (aged 14 to 18 years) and their parents. In Estonia, the responses of parents were received from 85% of the families, and in Finland from 55%. The main findings for each problem were as follows: (1) The adolescent’s, especially girl’s, conceptions of the atmosphere of the parent-child interaction and satisfaction with significant others were more strongly related to the adolescent’s perceptions of a harmonious relationship between the parents than to the parent’s satisfaction with the relationship with the spouse. (2) From the point of view of the adolescent’s conception of the atmosphere of the parent-child interaction, joint activities with the parents, and satisfaction with significant others, a harmonious relationship between the parents was most favorable. Lack of the father might be less detrimental to the adolescent’s, especially girl’s, conceptions of these matters than a less harmonious relationship between the parents in intact families. (3) The findings were replicated in two countries which differed in many respects at the time of data collection in 1985–1986.

Key words

Adolescent conceptions of interaction Family types Parental relationship 


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Copyright information

© Instituto Superior de Psicologia Aplicada, Lisbon, Portugal/ Springer Netherlands 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anu Narusk
    • 1
  • Lea Pulkkinen
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Sociology, Institute of International and Social StudiesEstonian Academy of SciencesTallinnEstonia
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland

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