The Linkage Between Multiple Perspectives of the Marital Relationship and Preschoolers' Adjustment

Erel, Osnat; Kissil, Karni
December 2003
Journal of Child & Family Studies;Dec2003, Vol. 12 Issue 4, p411
Academic Journal
We examined how children's, parents', and observers' perceptions of the marital relationship are linked with children's adjustment. Children's perceptions of the marital relationship were assessed using a new measure, the Interparental Relationship Interview for Children (IRIC). In the first phase of the study, 63 preschoolers, 63 mothers, and 56 fathers completed questionnaires assessing the interparental relationship. Teachers assessed the children's adjustment. In the second phase, 39 of the couples enacted a typical conflictual marital interaction. Findings established the reliability and validity of the IRIC and revealed that the IRIC uniquely contributes to the prediction of children's externalizing and internalizing behavior problems. Taken together, the different perspectives of the marital relationship explained 36% of the variance in children's externalizing behavior problems. These results suggest the promise of the IRIC and demonstrate the unique contribution of the young child's perspective.


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