What is the purpose of family? Families are where we connect ourselves in relationships to past, current, and future generations.
Abstract This article attempts to explain the effect of family structure on juvenile delinquency. The least amount of communication and structure the family provides, the more likely the child will engage in delinquent activities.
Data for this research were collected from a high school in a predominantly low-income area of the south. Research was conducted through the use of surveys. Findings suggest that family structure does indeed both negatively and positively play a role in the production of juvenile delinquency.
Sometimes a researcher has to get to what he or she thinks is the root of the problem to figure out what spawns a certain issue. What provokes a child to become delinquent and what makes the child gravitate so easily towards this lifestyle? This study explores how family life influences juvenile delinquency.
Juveniles are more likely to become juvenile delinquents if there is little structure provided for them in their families. Although there are several influential variables, there are three main categories on which I will be focusing that encompass all of these variables.
These categories are family functioning, impact of family disruption, and two-parent versus single parent households. According to Wright and Wright the family is the foundation of human society.
Children who are rejected by their parents, who grow up in homes with considerable conflict, or who are inadequately supervised are at the greatest risk of becoming delinquent. Immarigeon says it best when he states that justice can be better served and young people steered on the right path by involving families in juvenile crime cases.
If anything would play a large part in delinquency it would be a family. Understanding how the family and how the juvenile within the family works gets to the core of delinquency. Families are one of the strongest socializing forces in life.
They teach children to control unacceptable behavior, to delay gratification, and to respect the rights of others.
This statement alone could easily explain how the juvenile may end up becoming a delinquent. Wright and Wright suggest positive parenting practices during the early years and later in adolescence appear to act as buffers preventing delinquent behavior and assisting adolescents involved in such behavior to desist from delinquency.
Adolescence is a time of expanding vulnerabilities and opportunities that accompany the widening social and geographic exposure to life beyond school or family, but it starts with the family. A substantial number of children engage in delinquency.
Peers with a more coercive interpersonal style tend to become involved with each other, and this relationship is assumed to increase the likelihood of being involved in delinquent behavior. Referring back to the issue of monitoring, a lack of monitoring is reflected in the parent often not knowing where the child is, whom the child is with, what the child is doing or when the child will be home.
Monitoring becomes increasingly important as children move into adolescence and spend less time under the direct supervision of parents or other adults and more time with peers. Communication also plays a big role in how the family functions.
Clark and Shields state that the importance of positive communication for optimal family functioning has major implications for delinquent behavior. They also discovered that communication is indeed related to the commission of delinquent behavior and differences are shown within categories of age, sex, and family marital status.
Gorman-Smith and Tolan found that parental conflict and parental aggressiveness predicted violent offending; whereas, lack of maternal affection and paternal criminality predicted involvement in property crimes. Familial characteristics suggesting familial antisocial behavior or values such as family history of criminal behavior, harsh parental discipline, and family conflict have been among the most consistently linked.
In another study conducted by Gorman-Smith and her colleagues, data show that children are more likely to resort to violence if there is violence within relationships that they may share with their family Gorman-Smith, et al.
Children who live in homes with only one parent or in which marital relationships have been disrupted by divorce or separation are more likely to display a range of behavioral problems including delinquency, than children who are from two parent families Thornberry, et al.
Children who witness marital discord are at greater risk of becoming delinquents.
Juby and Farrington claim that there are three major classes that explain the relationship between disrupted families and delinquency; trauma theories, life course theories, and selection theories.
The trauma theories suggest that the loss of a parent has a damaging effect on children, most commonly because of the effect on attachment to the parent.
Life course theories focus on separation as a long drawn out process rather than a discrete event, and on the effects of multiple stressors typically associated with separation. The third major area within juvenile delinquency and families is single parent households versus two parent households.
Klein and Forehand suggest that the prediction of juvenile delinquency in early childhood depends on the type of maternal parenting skills that are imposed upon the child during early adolescence.Unfortunately, parents in modern times are increasingly absent from their children's lives during the growing-up years.
Everything we know about human behavior suggests that the family is the institution in which most children learn about character and morality. This lack of structure causes these children to grow up with little self-discipline and self-control.
Some parents adopt this method as an extreme opposite approach to their authoritarian upbringing, while others are simply afraid to do anything that may upset their child. This section will first consider factors within the family that have been found to be associated with the development of delinquency and then consider peer influences on delinquent behavior.
Note that issues concerning poverty and race are dealt with under the community factors section of this chapter. In direct and subtle ways, children are molded by the family culture into which they are born. Growing up, their assumptions about what is right and wrong, good and bad, reflect the beliefs, values and traditions of the family culture.
When families set up family foundations, they generally structure those foundations according to the same. Family Structure 1 Running head: FAMILY STRUCTURE AND WARMTH Family Structure and Warmth Growing Up Relates To Personal .
Marriage & Family Final. STUDY. PLAY. The most important benefit of growing up with married parents may be that children raised by married parents are less likely to live in _____- a situation that has serious negative effect on child outcomes.
Regardless of family structure, a family characterized by warmth, cohesion, and generally.