The mediating effect of self-esteem on the relationship between parenting practices and hope
Lancaster, Brittany D.
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Previous research has indicated that parenting may have an association with a youth's level of hope; however, there has been a paucity of research evaluating the relationship of specific parenting practices on youth hope. Additionally, despite previous studies indicating that self-esteem is related to both hope and parenting practices, no study has evaluated the potential mediating effect of self-esteem on these relationships. The aim of this study was to examine the associations between specific parenting practices (i.e., parental involvement, the use of positive reinforcement, consistency of discipline, and the use of corporal punishment) and hope. Additionally, self-esteem was evaluated as a mediator between these constructs. Data were collected from 154 youth (50.0% boys) with ages ranging from 10-17 years (M = 12.83, SD = 1.89). Youth identified as White (30.5%), Hispanic (26.6%), Asian (24%), other (13.6%), Black (2.6%), Native American (1.3%), and 1.3% of the participants did not respond. Youth completed self-report measures of perceived parenting practices, hope, and self-esteem. Inconsistent with study hypotheses, results indicated that discipline practices such as the consistency of discipline and the use of corporal punishment were not associated with hope. However, while controlling for age, self-esteem mediated the relationship between inconsistent discipline and hope indicating that inconsistent discipline may indirectly effect hope through self-esteem. Self-esteem did not mediate the relationship between corporal punishment and hope. Parental involvement and the use of positive reinforcement by parents were positively associated with hope in youth, and while controlling for age, self-esteem mediated these relationships. However, directionality and causality of these variables could not be determined based off analyses. Implications, limitations, and future directions are discussed.