Parenting Confidence During Toddlerhood: A Comparison of Mothers and Fathers

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Previous research has shown the Toddler Care Questionnaire (TCQ) to be a valid measure of parenting confidence among mothers of toddlers. However, there Is no evidence demonstrating the validity of the TCQ among fathers of toddlers. The purposes of this study were to 1) examine the reliability and validity of the TCQ among fathers of 12- to 36-month old children and 2) compare the childrearing topics mothers and fathers identify as those for which they would like information. Forty-six married mothers and fathers (n=92) completed the TCQ, three measures of child behavior, and a measure of parental depression. Maternal confidence was related to depression and all measures of child behavior. Paternal confidence was related only to the intensity of the child's behavior. Mothers requested more than twice the amount of childrearing information than did fathers although there were similarities in the types of information requested. The data support the validity of the TCQ and its clinical utility among fathers of toddlers although different factors appear to affect parenting confidence among mothers and fathers.

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