Parents’ Time with Children, Parenting Strain, and Children’s Well-Being

Paula Fomby, University of Michigan
Kelly Musick, Cornell University

Debates about the singular importance of parents’ time investments for children’s healthy development permeate policy discussions about child care, family leave, and nonresident parents’ involvement. Absent from these debates is an assessment of the emotional and interpersonal cost that an ideology of intensive parenting potentially imposes on parents themselves. We ask whether the benefits of time with parents for school-aged children's development depend on the emotional climate in a child’s family. In particular, we ask whether parenting stress and parental conflict condition the association between parents’ time with children and children's cognitive and socioemotional development. We assess the role of these potential moderators on mothers’ and fathers’ time with children separately and together. Our analysis uses time diary and survey data from a nationally-representative cohort of children and families who participated in the first two waves of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics Child Development Supplement (1997 and 2002).

  See paper

Presented in Session 94: Time Use of Parents and Children