Family Time and the Psychosocial Adjustment of Adolescent Siblings and Their Parents

Ann C. Crouter, Melissa R. Head, Susan M. McHale, Corinna Jenkins Tucker

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

86 Scopus citations


This study examined the implications of family time for firstborn and secondborn adolescent off-spring, mothers, and fathers in 192 dual-earner families, defining family time as time shared by the foursome in activities across 7 days. Data were gathered in daily telephone interviews. For firstborns, higher levels of family time at Time 1 predicted less involvement in risky behavior 2 years later, controlling for Time 1 risky behavior. Longitudinal analyses predicting depressive symptoms revealed family time X parent education interactions for firstborns, fathers, and mothers, suggesting that the implications of family time depended on social class. The pattern of results suggests that family time is protective when chosen by family members but not when it represents a default use of time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-162
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Marriage and Family
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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