Change in Parenting Democracy During the Transition to Adolescence: The Roles of Young Adolescents’ Noncompliance and Mothers’ Perceived Influenceedit
Objective. This study assessed the direct relation between young adolescents’ regulated noncompliance and mothers’ democratic childrearing practices as well as the potential mediating role of mothers’ perceived influence during the transition to adolescence. Design. 3 years of self-reported regulated noncompliance, perceived influence, and parenting democracy were gathered from 166 mothers and their firstborn children (55% female), ages 9 to 11 years at Time 1. Results. Longitudinal path analysis indicated a total effect between adolescents’ regulated noncompliance and higher maternal democracy. In addition, the total effect was mediated by mothers’ perceived influence, such that adolescents’ regulated noncompliance at Time 1 was associated with greater perceptions of influence at Time 2, which, in turn, was associated with greater maternal democracy at Time 3. Conclusions. Mothers with young adolescents who resist in a relatively mature, regulated manner tend to have more positive perceptions of their influence on their emerging adolescents’ behavior. In turn, mothers expecting to maintain their influence despite normative adolescent resistance are more likely to use democratic parenting strategies, granting their adolescents more input in decisions.