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Sensitivity to parenting in adolescents with callous/unemotional traits: Observational and experimental findings

Sensitivity to parenting in adolescents with callous/unemotional traits: Observational and experimental findings

O'Connor, Thomas G., Humayun, Sajid, Briskman, Jacqueline A. and Scott, Stephen (2016) Sensitivity to parenting in adolescents with callous/unemotional traits: Observational and experimental findings. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 125 (4). pp. 502-513. ISSN 0021-843X (Print), 1939-1846 (Online) (doi:10.1037/abn0000155)

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Abstract

Children and adolescents with callous-unemotional (CU) traits have been distinguished as a subset of individuals with disruptive behavioral disorders who may be less sensitive to parenting influence; we test this hypothesis using multiple methods and assessment paradigms. Two hundred seventy-one adolescents (mean age 12.6 years) from 3 samples at elevated risk for disruptive behavior disorders were studied. Symptoms of CU behavior were derived from standard questionnaire; assessments of behavioral adjustment were derived from clinical interview with parent, and parent-report, teacher-report, and self-report questionnaire. Parent–child relationship quality was based on observational assessments in which adolescent and parent behaviors were rated in 3 interaction tasks: (a) low conflict planning task; (b) problem-solving conflict task; (c) puzzle challenge task; parent interview and parent-report and child-report questionnaires of parenting were also assessed. Results indicated that the associations between parent–child relationship quality and behavioral adjustment were comparable in adolescents with and without CU traits. More notably, observational data indicated that adolescents with elevated CU traits showed comparatively greater within-individual variability in observed angry/irritable behavior across interaction tasks, suggesting greater sensitivity to and emotional dysregulation in challenging interpersonal contexts. The findings suggest that adolescents with CU are not less sensitive to parental influence and may in contrast show greater context-sensitive disturbances in emotional regulation. The results have implications for family-based assessment and treatment for adolescents with disruptive behavior disorders.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2016 American Psychological Association. This article may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Disruptive behavior disorders; callous-unemotional traits; emotional regulation; parent-adolescent observations within-individual variability
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education & Health
Faculty of Education & Health > Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
Last Modified: 18 Apr 2017 15:03
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: GREAT a
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/15293

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