We investigated how parents' attributions of blame/responsibility/internal locus for negative events happening to themselves and to their children were related to children's attributions about similar events in their own lives. In a sample of 145 families (including mother, father, and child aged 9–12 years; 73 boys), we tested for unique associations between children's attributions of blame/responsibility/internal locus (child self-attributions) with (a) parents' self-attributions blame/responsibility/internal locus (parent self-attributions) and (b) parents' child attributions of blame/responsibility/internal locus attributions (parents' child attributions). We also examined whether these associations differed across child and parent gender. Using linear regression models, we found children's self-attributions were uniquely negatively related to parents' self-attributions and uniquely positively related to parents' child attributions. There was no evidence these associations differed across same-gender versus opposite-gender parent–child dyads, although when mother and father attributions were entered in the same model, only fathers' child attributions were significantly associated with child self-attributions. Results are suggestive of the importance of parental influence in the formation of children's explanations for their social experiences.


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pp. 183-206
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