The Effect of Stepfathers on Self-Perception and Familial Support


  • Kamilah Adiva Freeman Prairie View A&M University
  • Logan A. Yelderman Prairie View A&M University



Social development, Social Impact, Nature vs. Nurture, Adolescents, Educational Development


The National Survey on American Life – Adolescent Supplemental data was designed to lay the foundation for future research in early identification of mental disorders for adults. The inclusion of social conditions adds to this detailed measure of mental health and provides a wealth of information that can be observed about mental well-being in adolescents. In particular, we used this data set to explore the interplay between self-perception and family relationships based on the absence of a biological father among African-American and Caribbean adolescents. This study provides a quantitative analysis of the difference between the perceived self and familial factors for those with a stepfather and those without a stepfather. As evident in the findings, those with a stepfather reported to have higher self-esteem, a more positive perception of self, and a more uplifting family model compared to those without a stepfather. These findings were detected by noting the significance values for a one-way ANOVA and observing the mean differences among the selected variables. Some discrepancy did exist, however; self-esteem with regards to education was reported to be lower for adolescents with a stepfather than without. This could be attributed to an overachievement mentality by those from single parent homes, alluding to the idea that adolescents without stepfathers possess intrinsic motivation and have the drive to attain a higher education. The data showed the presence of a father figure enhances self-perception and familial support, but not academic motivation.


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Author Biographies

Kamilah Adiva Freeman, Prairie View A&M University

Kamilah Freeman is a junior psychology student at Prairie View A&M University where she is majoring in psychology and minoring in entrepreneurship. Her research interests lie in cross-cultural psychology, specifically in the relationship between socioeconomic factors and culture. Her passion for cross-cultural psychology transpired when she first studied abroad in China. It was there that she gained insight into the differences between the appearances of mental health in individuals across cultural lines. That particular experience motivated Kamilah to seek ways to incorporate culture into her academic endeavors. As a result, she inspires to become a clinical psychologist, owning her own clinical practice,  incorporating alternative therapeutic treatments from various cultures.

Logan A. Yelderman, Prairie View A&M University




How to Cite

Freeman, K. A., & Yelderman, L. A. (2019). The Effect of Stepfathers on Self-Perception and Familial Support. Journal of Student Research.