The effects of parental control on a child

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The effects of parental control on a child

Received Dec 11; Accepted Dec The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author s or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice.

No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract The current study investigated the differences between intact and non-intact families in family processes, including systematic family functioning, parental behavioral control, parental psychological control, and parent—child relational qualities.

The participants were 3, Secondary One students, with a mean age of Four validated scales were used to assess family processes. Results showed that adolescents in non-intact families perceived relatively poorer family functioning, lower level of paternal and maternal behavioral control, lower level of paternal psychological control, and poorer parent—child relational qualities than did adolescents in intact families.

This generally indicated that family processes were poorer in non-intact families, compared with those in intact families. The theoretical and practical implications of the findings were discussed.

However, in Hong Kong adoptive families are rare and non-intact families are primarily concerned with divorced and conjugally separated families. A number of theories such as family ecological theories 7 and social control theories 8 suggest that parental marital disruption adversely affects child development through deteriorated family environment and parenting processes.

The effects of parental control on a child

Shek and Leung 5 summarized three main points in these theories that explain how marital disruption influences child development and parenting processes. Second, family disruption may lead to family financial difficulty.

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In this situation, if the single-parent has to work for a living, parental supervision over the child may further be reduced. On the other hand, if the parent receives welfare, economic disadvantage may also adversely affect parenting processes.

Third, marital disruption brings parents more stresses, which may lead to adjustment difficulties for parents and deteriorated parenting processes.

Parenting processes are important for adolescent development and could be represented by family functioning, parental behavioral control, parental psychological control, and parent—child relational qualities.

Conceptual Framework

Family functioning denotes to what extent family members are bonded emotionally, communicate effectively, and respond to problems collaboratively 9.

Parental behavioral control can be divided into five dimensions: Research showed that higher levels of family functioning and behavioral control were associated with positive adolescent educational and psychological outcomes; whereas higher level of psychological control was related to negative outcomes 15 A number of studies demonstrated that family functioning was better in intact two-parent families than in single-parent families 1718 ; whereas other studies did not show such tendency 19 Freistadt and Strohschein 21 as well as Brown and Manning 22 further looked into family functioning in cohabiting step-families in addition to single-parent families.

The findings on the effect of family structure on parental behavioral control and psychological control are also inconclusive. For example, Florsheim et al.

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However, some researchers reported that family structure was associated with neither adolescent-reported nor mother-reported parental monitoring 10 Regarding parental psychological control, several studies did not show the relationship between family structure and parental psychological control 1024 A number of studies showed that parent—child relationships were generally better in intact families than in non-intact families 1326 — 28and the negative influence of divorce on parent—child relationships can last for a long period of time 29 In a divorced family, a child may have a poor relation with one parent but keep a good relation with the other parent.

Kalmijn 30 interpreted that the inequality in the relations may be out of loyalty conflicts and compensation effects. In experiencing conflicts of loyalty, children may interact more with one parent and disengage from the other parent.

The effects of parental control on a child

Alternatively, one parent may invest more in a child when the relation between the child and the other parent deteriorates. Residential mothers are inclined to be more openly communicating with their children and more involved in monitoring and knowing their children, whereas residential fathers tend to have less custody stress and may have fewer problems with parental discipline and control Furthermore, divorce tends to undermine opposite-sex relationships more than same-sex relationships.

In addition, non-residential mothers tend to have more frequent contact with children than do non-residential fathers.Much of the research examining the effects of parental control has been guided by the idea that too much may interfere with a child’s psychological development by making them feel as though they don’t have any control over their lives.

cerning the effects on child behavior of parental control variables are criti- cally examined. Finally, the relation between freedom and control is er- amined and the position defended that authoritative control may effectively generate in the child, behavior which while well socialized is also wilful and independent.

The Effects of a Lack of Parental Control by Angus Koolbreeze In the absence of parental authority and guidance, children are likely to act on their impulses, leading to . In the case of incarceration, it should be recognized that any attempt to attribute effects on children to parental incarceration alone may be doomed to failure, because many events before, during, and after the incarceration co-occur and contribute to child outcomes.


Three models of parental control-permissive, authoritarian, and authoritative-are described and contrasted. Pertinent findings concerning the effects on child behavior of . In summary, personality and child rearing, the child-rearing process, the range of practices, patterns and dimensions, and effects of child rearing are considered.

Diana Baumrind & Parenting Styles