Social Support in Stepfamily Worlds
Chapter Twelve. Concluding Thoughts on Support in Stepfamilies
← 150 | 151 → • CHAPTER TWELVE •
Concluding Thoughts on Support in Stepfamilies
In this final chapter, I return to the impetus for this study, which is the consistent finding that, on average, stepchildren do worse academically, emotionally, and behaviorally than their counterparts in biological families (Amato, 2001; Coleman et al., 2000) and that family processes (e.g., communication, social support, conflict) most likely drive these outcomes (e.g., Adamsons et al., 2007; Hofferth, 2006; Lansford et al., 2001). Before expounding on this idea, I first discuss five issues related to the interpretation of the findings reported in this volume. I then zoom out and suggest three propositions about stepfather-stepson communication and suggest how they may correspond to youth outcomes in stepfamilies.
This study adds a collection of case studies and a descriptive base of stepfather-stepson supportive communication which augment existing literature on stepfamily systems, the role of a stepfather, and how social support functions in the context of six stepfamilies. The analysis and findings should be interpreted with a good understanding of what was done with whom. Yet the descriptive base provided in these cases helps add to what is already known about stepfamilies in aggregate and, moreover, sheds light on interaction that occurs within stepfamily systems. Researchers and practitioners have long recognized that stepfamilies do not operate on a nuclear family model (Pasley et al., 1996), but few studies have elucidated what a stepfamily model might look like. Because of the detailed descriptions...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.