Neighborhood, Drug Lifestyle, and Maternal Social-Familial Setting Influences on Children's Risk for Poor School Performance and Children's Trauma Symptoms

Richard Mancuso, University at Buffalo
Brenda A. Miller, University at Buffalo
Nancy J. Smyth, University at Buffalo
Eugene Maguin, University at Buffalo

Self-report data from Mother and child pairs (N=499) were used to analyze relationships between neighborhood problems, mother's drug lifestyle involvement, monitoring and punitiveness and their children's school performance and trauma symptoms. Two research questions are examined: Does living in neighborhoods characterized with many systemic problems increase children's chance of developing trauma symptoms, controlling for maternal monitoring and punitiveness behaviors? Second, does mothers' drug lifestyle involvement increae their children's poor performance in school, controlling for parental monitoring and punitiveness behaviors? Correlation and regression analyses revealed that drug lifestyle involvement along with neighborhood problems contribute to children's poor academic performance and their develo9ping child trauma symptoms (e.g., anger and sexual preoccupation), respectively. Findings suggest joint influences of maternal behaviors and neighborhood factors that contribute to children's negative internalized and externalized outcomes. Prevention models need to be developed and existing prevention programs need to integrate interventions and programs to reduce the risk of maternal behaviors and environmental conditions impacting children lives. Based on the findings, a prevention construct, as well as, an established preventuion risk-focused model are adapted to the present work that addresses precursors to adolescent problem behavior.

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Updated 05/20/2006