Child Personality Moderates Associations between Parenting and Relational and Physical Aggression

Avanté J. Smack*, Shauna C. Kushner, Jennifer L. Tackett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Although negative parenting strategies are a risk factor for relational and physical aggression, research has not previously investigated whether child personality traits moderate the association between negative parenting and relational and physical aggression. This was the aim of this study. Participants were mothers of 368 children (172 males, Mage = 11.61, SD = 0.82). Mothers reported on their parenting practices, child personality traits, and child aggression. Results indicated that 2 child personality traits (extraversion and openness) moderated the relationship between inconsistent discipline and relational aggression. Additionally, agreeableness moderated the relationship between poor monitoring and supervision and physical aggression. Specifically, children low on these personality traits showed the highest levels of aggression in the context of negative parenting. These results highlight the importance of examining child personality as a moderator of parental influences on psychopathology development, and emphasize important distinctions between parenting strategies and physical versus relational aggression outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)845-862
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • aggression
  • children
  • clinical issues
  • family
  • parenting
  • personality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Child Personality Moderates Associations between Parenting and Relational and Physical Aggression'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this