How parental development influence child development
Developmental psychologists have, for many years, been interested in the effect of parenting style on the development of a child. While it may be clear that parenting has a direct influence on child development, establishing the exact cause and the link between specific actions by the parents and child development has been quite challenging. Children raised in two very different environments may end up developing similar personalities while those raised in the same environment by the same parents grow up to have two completely different personalities. Despite these conflicting findings, researchers are still adamant that parental styles directly influence the development of the child.
Human development occurs mainly during the first two years of life. During this stage, the child begins to learn about their general environment and the people in it. They mainly learn by interacting with parents and other close family members in the immediate environment. During this period, children observe and copy everything that their parents do.
There are four major parenting styles used in psychology today. They are based on the work of Diana Baumrind, a famous developmental psychologist during the 1960s. According to Baumrind, the type of parenting style a child is exposed to has a direct impact on their behavior.
• Authoritative Parenting
Authoritative parents have high expectations for their children in terms of achievements and maturity. But they are also warm, affectionate, and supportive. They set rules and provide reasons for their actions and engage their children through discussions and guidance. Authoritative parenting results in happy, self-contented, and successful individuals.
• Authoritarian Parenting
Authoritarian parents demand a high standard for their children. However, unlike authoritative parents, authoritarian parents do not provide any reasons for the rules. Failure to follow the rules often results in harsh punishments. Children from such backgrounds tend to develop into obedient and proficient individuals. However, their levels of happiness, self-esteem, and social competence are low.
• Permissive/indulgent parenting
Permissive parents are very reluctant about setting and enforcing any rules for their children. Such parents are involved with their children but do not want to disappoint or annoy them. Children of permissive parenting lack regulation, perform extremely poor in school, and experience multiple problems with authorities.
• Uninvolved parenting
Parents do not participate in setting any rules for their children altogether. Often, such parents may have mental health problems like depression or physical abuse. Children raised by such parents lack self-control, have low self-esteem, and are more likely to develop mental and substance abuse problems.
Each parenting style has a unique effect on the development of the child. Authoritative parenting is associated with positive development and behaviors like competence, self-regulation, and strong self-esteem. Parents should aim to achieve a balance between maintaining a healthy relationship with their child while still exercising authority in a healthy way.