Mothers and fathers of 54 term infants and 49 preterm infants were observed individually interacting with their infant in the home during a structured task (Nursing Child Assessment Teaching Scale) when the child was 3 and 12 months old. Parents of preterm infants had lower interaction scores than parents of term infants. Differences between the groups were not explained by differences in the behavior of the infant, in levels of stress (measured by the Parenting Stress Index), in marital support (measured by the Dyadic Adjustment Scale), or in level of involvement with their child. Fathers of both term and preterm infants had lower interaction scores than mothers. Parents' interaction scores decreased over time, while the responsiveness and clarity of cues of the infants increased over time. The results are discussed in relationship to other research on prematurity stereotyping and the vulnerable child syndrome.