The present study examined the longitudinal associations among supportive coparenting and father engagement during infancy and mother-child attachment at age three within an at-risk sample (N= 1371), using secondary data from Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing (FFCW) study. Mothers reported on coparenting and father engagement during the one-year phone interview and mother-child attachment was assessed using the Toddler Attachment Sort-39 (TAS-39) at age three during the three-year in-home interview. Findings suggest that supportive coparenting was significantly associated with higher levels of father engagement and more secure mother-child attachment relationship across three racial/ethnic groups including white, African American, and Hispanic. Interestingly, results also support racial/ethnic differences such that after controlling for child sex, infant temperament, family structure and maternal education, father engagement was a significant predictor of secure mother-child attachment only among Hispanic families. In addition, race/ethnicity moderated the link between supportive coparenting and father engagement such that the link was stronger among white families compared to minority families. Results highlight the significance of coparenting and father engagement in relation to mother-child attachment relationship. The implications of these findings for interventions targeting paternal engagement and coparenting among at-risk children are discussed (Author abstract)
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