Coparenting processes in the US and Turkey: triadic interactions among mothers, fathers, and grandmothers with 3-month-old infants

Salman Engin, Selin
In the current dissertation, coparenting dynamics and its relationships with the critical family variables were examined among families having a 3-month-old baby in Turkish and the US samples. Forty-five Turkish and 54 American families participated in the study. Coparenting behaviors were observed during triadic interactions (mother-father-baby) of family members for approximately 10-minutes, and parents reported their perceived coparenting alliance. Several family variables, such as marital-adjustment, romantic-attachment of parents, parenting-stress, and postpartum-depression were examined in relation to coparenting. Considering the important role of extended family members in raising children in Turkish culture, mothers’ coparenting behaviors with grandmothers were also investigated in the Turkish context only. Results indicated that both observed and perceived coparenting dynamics in Turkey can be meaningfully assessed using the conceptual paradigm and associated measurement tools developed in the US. Turkish families with mothers having college degree education and American families were more similar than different in the majority of the observed coparenting variables. However, mothers with low level of education in Turkey differed from the US-mothers and highly educated Turkish-mothers. Families with mothers having higher education tended to be more cooperative and more actively engaged with baby during triadic interactions. Mothers’ coparenting behaviors were similar along the most dimensions in the presence of fathers or grandmothers. However, grandmothers were observed as more flirting and distracting. Both observed and perceived coparenting behaviors were significantly associated with marital-adjustment and romantic-attachment, parenting stress and depression in the anticipated directions. The implications of the study for further research and practice were discussed.
Citation Formats
S. Salman Engin, “Coparenting processes in the US and Turkey: triadic interactions among mothers, fathers, and grandmothers with 3-month-old infants,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2014.