Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Child's Mental Health and Antisocial Behavior: A Closer Look at Effects of Parent Incarceration Based on Timing
by Herrera, Melissa, Psy.D., The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, 2018, 58; 10637287
Abstract (Summary)

On any given day, one in 28 children loses a parent to incarceration, creating a higher risk for mental health concerns and antisocial and criminal behavior. This study examined negative outcomes, such as antisocial behavior and criminal behavior, of children who have experienced a parent’s incarceration. A closer look was taken at the effects of mix timing incarceration, in and out of prison, on children. There was also an analysis on the influence of intergenerational criminal behavior on a child’s wellbeing and long-term outcome. The results of this study indicated that a parent incarcerated with mix timing during their children’s childhood and adolescence leads to a higher risk of mental health concerns in the minors. Depression was significantly higher in children with a history of parent imprisonment (M 54.6, SD 14.8) in comparison to children with a stable household (M 46.3, SD 9.6). All effect sizes showed that parental imprisonment with mix timing was associated with higher rates of child mental health concerns. Furthermore, findings showed that parental imprisonment was associated with higher rates of antisocial or criminal behavior among children. Children with imprisoned mothers reported being convicted for criminal activity at more than double the rate of the control group. Meanwhile, a significantly higher proportion of inmates had a history of paternal imprisonment (39%) than the control group (7%). As for aggressive and antisocial behavior, the odds ratio for children with parental imprisonment was 2.2 ( CI= 1.6-3.0) for boys and 1.7 (CI= 1.3-2.4) for girls. The results of the study provide insight and awareness of the increasing numbers of children falling into a pattern of intergenerational incarceration, as well as mental health concerns and antisocial or criminal behavior. This dissertation provides evidence of the need for resources, awareness, and further prevention.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hill, Loren M.
Commitee: Fries, Jonna
School: The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Department: Clinical Forensic Psychology
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-B 79/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Mental health, Social psychology, Clinical psychology, Criminology
Keywords: Antisocial behavior, Children mental health, Criminal behavior, Mental health, Parental incareration, Timing of incarceration
Publication Number: 10637287
ISBN: 978-0-355-45732-2
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