materialism, parent child relations, parenting, parent psychological control, coercion, adolescent development


This study examined the longitudinal relationships among materialism, parent–child relationship quality, and psychological control for fathers and mothers. Data came from 254 heterosexual couples participating in the Flourishing Families Project, a 10-year longitudinal study of inner family life. We found that the association of parents’ materialism at T1 and parent–child relationship at T2 differed by gender. In harmony with our hypothesis, fathers’ materialism at T1 significantly predicted a decrease in father–child relationship quality at T2. Contrary to our hypothesis, mothers’ materialism at T1 was not significantly associated with mother–child relationship quality at T2. Parental psychological control was negatively related to both father–child and motherchild relationship quality but did not serve as a moderator in the relationship between materialism and parent–child relationships. That materialism appears to be detrimental to father–child relationship quality but not detract from mother–child relationship quality is thought provoking. We propose several possible explanations for these disparate findings, including a possible link between materialism and empowerment for women (but not men), and that materialism for women (but not men) may be associated with goods purchased for the benefit of the family rather than the individual. We provide suggestions for future research based on these findings.

Original Publication Citation

Allsop, D. B.*, Wang, C.-Y.*, Dew, J. P., Holmes, E. K., Hill, E. J., & Leavitt, C. E. (2020). Daddy, mommy, and money: The association between parental materialism on parent-child relationship quality. Journal of Family and Economic Issues.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Journal of Family and Economic Issues




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Associate Professor