Date of Award

Fall 2008

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Cesar Rebellon


Prior research drawing on Social Bond Theory finds mixed evidence that parental influences are associated with a modest decrease in delinquency, but few studies have disaggregated maternal and paternal influences to examine their individual impacts on teen delinquency. The studies that have did not examine whether same-sex parental influences moderate delinquent peer influences on teen delinquency. The present study argues that (1) same-sex parent-adolescent associations may have important main effects on delinquency and (2) that same-sex parent-adolescent influences may simultaneously interact with peer delinquency such that delinquent peer influences decrease among youth whose same-sex parent exert strong parental influences over them. Through the use of two waves of Add Health data, same-sex parental influences are revealed to not buffer delinquent peer influences, while same-sex parent-adolescent associations do exert significant influences on teen delinquency. The potential policy implications of these findings are discussed.