Strengthening Couple Relationships for Optimal Child Development: Lessons from Research and Intervention

By Goeke-Morey, Marcie C. | Journal of Marriage and Family, June 2011 | Go to article overview

Strengthening Couple Relationships for Optimal Child Development: Lessons from Research and Intervention


Goeke-Morey, Marcie C., Journal of Marriage and Family


Strengthening Couple Relationships for Optimal Child Development: Lessons from Research and Intervention. Marc S. Schulz, Marsha Kline Pruett, Patricia K. Kerig, & Ross D. Parke (Eds.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. 2010. 244 pp. ISBN 1433805472. $79.95 (cloth).

Promoting strong families and optimizing positive development for children are paramount concerns in our society. Parents, researchers, clinicians, and policymakers work to understand and create environments that foster well-being, security, and achievement in children. We often fail, however, to emphasize in our efforts a context that for decades has been shown to be of fundamental importance to children's development, that is, the quality of parents' relationships with each other. Strengthening Couple Relationships for Optimal Child Development: Lessons from Research and Intervention focuses a lens on the profound impact that parents' relationships have on developing families and children. The editors of this volume (Marc Schulz, Marsha Kline Pruett, Patricia Kerig, and Ross Parke), together with prominent scholars in the fields of child development, couples research, family studies, and clinical intervention (including Bradbury, Conger, Cowan and Cowan, Cummings, Gottman, Levenson, and McHaIe, among others), articulate the ways in which couples' relationships enhance or compromise functioning in families and provide strategies for promoting optimal outcomes, particularly for children.

The initial chapter, written by the book's editors, documents the historical path of couple and family research, including the shift from independent to interdependent models of family functioning. The remainder of the book comprises three parts.

Part 1 (Chapters 2-5) highlights the implications of the quality of couple relationships for other dyads and individuals in the family. Chapter 2 includes a review of emotional security theory (EST) as a conceptual model for understanding the processes underlying the impact of marital conflict on children. The authors discuss specific aspects of EST that hold particular relevance for designing prevention and intervention programs, including their own psychoeducational program, to lessen the negative effects of parents' disputes for children. Parents' conflict, whether they handle it well or poorly, affects even very young children. The authors of Chapter 3 provide evidence to support a compelling technique for overcoming some of the methodological challenges of assessing how preschool-aged children perceive and process marital conflict, the Berkeley Puppet Interview. Chapter 4 examines ways in which marital relationship processes interrelate with parent- child and whole family relationships. The authors provide an insightful look into the construct of boundary dissolution and its implications for families and children of distressed couples. Chapter 5 provides a summary of the development of the construct of coparenting and highlights key findings that underscore its importance for children's care and upbringing. The author emphasizes the need to promote and support positive coparenting alliances in nuclear, fragile, and extended-kin family systems.

Part 2 (Chapters 6-9) is concerned with the key domains and determinants of couple functioning and the promise of advances in methodology and statistical techniques for addressing more complex questions about the nature of effects and processes involved. Chapter 6 considers martial satisfaction across the transition to parenthood. The authors review research on group differences as well as findings from promising recent work considering trajectories of change, and they provide recommendations for future research, including continued focus on predictors of change and processes that might be amendable to intervention. The authors of Chapter 7 propose and provide partial validation for an integrative, developmental model for understanding how relationship quality changes during the transition to parenthood.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Strengthening Couple Relationships for Optimal Child Development: Lessons from Research and Intervention
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.