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      Fathers' Perspectives on Coparenting in the Context of Child Feeding

      research-article
      , ScD 1 , , , BS 1 , , PhD 1, , 2
      Childhood Obesity
      Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

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          Abstract

          Background: In a diverse sample of fathers, this study examined coparenting dynamics specific to (1) how fathers managed responsibilities for food parenting with the child's mother and (2) the extent to which their food parenting practices were co-operative versus conflicting with those of the mother.

          Methods: Semistructured interviews were conducted with 37 fathers (38 ± 9.1 years) using a piloted interview guide. Interview questions focused on the division of responsibility in food parenting practices, experiences of consistent versus conflicting practices, and the source and consequences of conflicting practices. The data were analyzed in QSR NVivo 10 using thematic analysis.

          Results: Sixty-two percent ( N = 23) of fathers reported sharing food parenting responsibilities with the child's mother. Among the remaining fathers, approximately half reported being solely responsible for food parenting ( N = 6) and half reported that the mother was solely responsible ( N = 8). Fathers reported using a variety of approaches to manage planning, procuring, and preparing food with mothers. Cooperative food parenting practices were reported by approximately half of the fathers in this sample. A large percentage of fathers (40%) also reported instances of conflicting food parenting practices. Conflicting practices typically focused on access to energy-dense, nutrient-poor snacks and introducing variety into the diet. Dissimilarities in practices were driven by differences in parental eating habits, feeding philosophies, and concern for child health, and often resulted in child tantrums or refusal to eat.

          Conclusions: This study identifies potential sources of inconsistencies in components of coparenting that would be important to address in future interventions.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Child Obes
          Child Obes
          chi
          Childhood Obesity
          Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. (140 Huguenot Street, 3rd FloorNew Rochelle, NY 10801USA )
          2153-2168
          2153-2176
          01 December 2016
          01 December 2016
          : 12
          : 6
          : 455-462
          Affiliations
          [ 1 ]Department of Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Harvard University , Boston, MA.
          [ 2 ]Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Harvard University , Boston, MA.
          Author notes
          Address correspondence to: Neha Khandpur, ScD, Department of Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Harvard University 677 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, E-mail: neha12@ 123456mail.harvard.edu
          Article
          PMC6445205 PMC6445205 6445205 10.1089/chi.2016.0118
          10.1089/chi.2016.0118
          6445205
          27636332
          61d18a9e-246d-4bc0-b7e5-80efc8f84912
          Copyright 2016, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
          History
          Page count
          Tables: 3, References: 38, Pages: 8
          Categories
          Original Articles

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