Research Paper
Positive and negative qualities of South African adolescents’ parent and peer relationships

  • Elmien Lesch
  • Nadia de Jager

Abstract

Parent and peer relationships are important social resources for adolescents. South African research on adolescents’ relationships, however, underemphasises these relationships as potential positive resources. Studies also tend to use samples from urban populations, while rural and semi-rural adolescent populations are neglected. This study focused on White and Coloured adolescents living in one South African semi-rural community and their ratings of positive and negative relationship qualities in relationships with parents and peers. Using the Network of Relationships Inventory (NRI), we found that mothers, best friends and romantic partners were relatively equal sources of social support. Mothers’ high ratings for support, conflict and punishment may point to mothers bearing the primary responsibility for child care. Fathers’ low support ratings raise concern as father involvement is important for adolescents’ well-being. White participants overall rated their relationship higher for support and lower for negative qualities than the Coloured participants.

Journal of Child and Adolescent Mental Health 2014, 26(1): 1–14

Author Biographies

Elmien Lesch
Department of Psychology, Stellenbosch University, PB X1, Matieland, 7602, South Africa
Nadia de Jager
Department of Psychology, Stellenbosch University, PB X1, Matieland, 7602, South Africa
Published
2014-03-31
Section
Articles

Journal Identifiers


eISSN: 1728-0591
print ISSN: 1728-0583