The Power Motive and Parenting Style—Is Incongruence Related to Inconsistency?

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The impact of motive incongruence on psychological and physical well-being has received considerable research attention during the past several years. However, little headway has been made to date in declaring the role of incongruence in the power motive for interpersonal behavior, such as parenting. Parenting is one of the most important domains of social interaction inherently related to the power motive. In this study, we examined incongruence in the implicit (nPower) and the explicit power motive system (sanPower) as predictor of inconsistent parenting in 36 mothers. The results suggest that nPower and sanPower combine to explain variance in mothers’ inconsistent parenting. Specifically, inconsistent parenting of mothers was associated with the interaction of high levels in nPower and low levels in sanPower. Given the nature of this incongruent motive base, their parenting behavior is not consistent over time and situations. The present study extends previous research on motive incongruence and provides potential implications for the family adjustment.

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