Can women provide reliable information about their children's fathers? cross-informant agreement about men's lifetime antisocial behaviour.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

It is difficult to study the contribution of fathers' antisocial behaviour to children's development because fathers with behavioural problems are often absent or reluctant to participate in research. This study examines whether mothers' reports about their children's fathers' antisocial behaviour can be substituted for interviews with fathers. Both members of 67 couples (N = 134) were interviewed separately and independently about the men's lifetime antisocial behaviour. There was strong relative agreement: the women's reports about men's antisocial behaviour and the men's self-reports about the same behaviour were highly correlated. However, there was poor agreement about absolute level: compared to men's self-reports, women reported fewer of the men's antisocial behaviours. Women's reports provide a reliable index of men's relative standing in a distribution and can be used in research about their children's fathers, but should not be used to make diagnostic decisions about men's antisocial disorders.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Caspi, A; Taylor, A; Smart, M; Jackson, J; Tagami, S; Moffitt, TE

Published Date

  • October 1, 2001

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 42 / 7

Start / End Page

  • 915 - 920

PubMed ID

  • 11693586

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1469-7610

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0021-9630

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/1469-7610.00787


  • eng