IMPACT OF PARENTING STYLES ON
Supervisor: Láng András
Psychology BA Pecs
23rd March 2019
Table of contents:
Pattern of parenting style………………………………………
Merits and demerits of parenting styles……………………….
Issue in parenting style…………………………………………
Social class and parenting style………………………………..
Changing parenting styles……………………………………..
A study on parenting styles in India…………………………..
Modern society is giving more importance to parenting styles. It represents the
different approaches parents use to raise their children. This paper looks into
various kinds of parenting styles followed by families. Modern parenting is
assorted with various issues. The root cause of lager part of the mental health
problems arise in adolescence are connected to parenting styles. Most parents use a
diversity of styles depending upon their culture and societal demands. The design
of parenting styles and their collision on children development are explained in the
paper. The impact of social changes on childhood in India obtain attention.
Parenting style needs change according to the changes taking place in a society.
Effect of social class on the selection of parenting style is also discussed in the
Keywords: Parenting style, patterns of parenting styles, issue of parenting styles,
social class and parenting styles
Good parenting is parenting that prepares children to meet the demands of the specific culture or
subculture in which they live. We can nonetheless draw some conclusions about the ingredients
of good parenting that will apply in most settings. We can go far in understanding which
parenting styles are effective to prepare the children to meet the society. Darling and Steinberg
(1993) defined parenting style as overall climate of parent child interactions. It is an effective
context of sorts that sets the tone for the parent’s interactions with the child. Parenting style is a
determinant factor in child development. it affects psychological and social functioning of the
children. Parenting style is largely affected by the influence of one’s own parents. Temperament,
educational achievement, culture, socioeconomic status and the influence of their spouse affects
parenting style as well. Temperament of the parents and the child affects style of parenting, and
the mother and father may differ in style as well (Belsky, 2005). Therefore the article deals with
different parenting styles that parents use for raising their children.
Patterns of parenting styles:
We can understand the effectiveness of parenting style by considering two dimension of
parenting, as depicted in Figure 1.
Parental acceptance / responsiveness (also referred to as parental warmth or supportiveness)
refers to “the extent to which parents intentionally foster individuality, self-regulation, and self-
assertion by being attuned, supportive, and acquiescent to children’s special needs and demands”
(Baumrind, 1991). Parental demandingness (also referred to as behavioral control) refers to “the
claims parents make on children to become integrated into the family whole, by their maturity
demands, supervision, disciplinary efforts and willingness to confront the child who disobeys”
By crossing these two dimensions, four basic patterns of parenting styles should be considered
(see table 1).
The authoritarian, authoritative and permissive parenting styles were originally identified and
defined by Baumrind (1967, 1991) in a pioneering longitudinal study. Baumrid (1967) found that
preschool children raised by authoritative parents were the best adjusted. They were cheerful
socially responsible, self-reliant, achievement oriented and cooperative with adults and peers.
Children of authoritarian parents tended to be moody and seemingly unhappy, easily annoyed,
relatively aimless, and not very pleasant to be around. Children of permissive parents were often
impulsive and aggressive, especially if they were boys. They tended to be bossy and self-
centered, rebellious, lacking in self-control, rather aimless and quite low in independence and
Subsequent research has shown that the worst developmental outcomes were associated with a
neglectful, uninvolved style of parenting. Children of neglectful parents are notable for
behavioral problems such as aggression and frequent temper tantrums as early as age three. They
have a tendency to become hostile and antisocial in adolescents (Sigelman, 1999).
Children of permissive parents were very immature. They had difficulty controlling their
impulses and were disobedient and rebellious when asked to do something that conflicted with
their momentary desires. They were also overly demanding and dependent on adults, and they
showed less persistence on tasks at preschool then children whose parents exerted more control.
The link between permissive parenting and dependent, non-achieving behavior was especially
strong for boys (Berk, 1998).
As children move into school, peer and community contexts, the parent-child relationship change.
Recent changes in the family - such as high rates of divorce, maternal employment - can have
positive as well as negative effects on children. In middle childhood, the amount of time children
spend with parents declines dramatically. The child’s growing independence means that parents
must deal with new issue like misuse of the facilities like internet access, mobile phones,
substance abuse, teenage pregnancy, problems between peer groups, emotional problems, all
forms of child abuse and exploitations, lack of social responsibility, etc. the common thinking is
that authoritative pattern of parenting style is best for child development. But it may vary
according to culture and societal changes (Myers-Walls et al., 2006).
From one point of view there are many parenting styles as there are parents. One helpful
grouping is provided in E. E. LeMaster’ listing of five parenting styles (see table 2): the martyr,
the pal, the police officer, the teacher-counsellor, and the athletic coach (Lamanna and Riedmann,
1988). Individuals parents probably combine elements of two or more of these styles in their own
personal parenting styles.
Each of these parenting styles has its own advantages and disadvantages. The parents as martyr
face some problems like, the goals the martyring parents set are possible to carry out and the
parents always feel guilty. The parents as pal style points out that there are some relationship
risks. If things do not go well, parents may want to retract to retract to a more formal,
authoritarian style of parenting. But once they have established a buddy relationship, it is difficult
to regain authority.
Children are more likely to be influenced by their parents’ knowledge and expertise or wish tp
identify with parent’s value than by the parents authority. The key is respect and a close
relationship; habitual punishment and the policing of adolescents are far less effective modes of
socialization. The style of parent as teacher counsellor put the needs of the child above the
parent’s needs. It may be difficult for most parents as to always be there to stimulate the children.
Children also have inherited intellectual capacities and needs. Instead of this parenting style an
interactive perspective regards the influence between parent and child as mutual and reciprocal.
The athletic coach style recognizes that parents, like coaches have their own personalities and
needs. Once individuals become parents, they remain in this role the rest of their lives. As we
explore parenting over the course of life, we will apply principles and suggestions from the
interactive and athletic coach perspectives on parenting.
Merits and demerits of parenting styles:
What kind of parenting style help children become happy about themselves and friendly with
others? How these parenting styles affect children in their later life. The outcomes of any given
parenting style on any given child depends on many factors that interact with each other,
including the child’s age, sex, and temperament.; the parents’ personality characteristics, personal
history, economic circumstances, and the like; the needs of all the family members; and the
values of the culture. The following generalizations are drawn from the study conducted by
Baumrind (1967). Authoritarian parenting styles generally lead to children who are obedient and
proficient, but they rank lower in happiness, social competence and self-esteem. They lack social
competence as the parent generally predicts what the child should do instead of allowing the child
to choose by him or herself. The children also rarely take initiatives. They are socially withdrawn
and look to others to decide what’s right. These children tend to be low in self-confidence and
lack social and academic competence. These children lack spontaneity and curiosity. These
children were often characterized by lacking spontaneity and intellectual curiosity (Cole et al.,
Authoritative parenting styles tend to result in children who are happy, capable and successful.
Authoritative parenting without physical punishment produces the most positive results and the
fewest problems for children in today’s world. Children who have been raised in authoritative
homes score higher on a variety of measures of competence, social development, self-
perceptions, and mental health than those raised in authoritarian, permissive, or neglectful homes.
This is true not only in childhood, but also during adolescence, as evidenced by higher academic
achievement and psychosocial development, and fewer behavioral problems (Ballantine, 2001).
Permissive parenting often results in children who rank low in happiness and self-regulation.
These children are more likely to experience problems with authority and tend to perform poorly
in school. Permissive style of child rearing is nurturant and accepting, but it avoids making
demands or imposing controls of any kind. Permissive parents allow children to make many of
their own decisions at an age when they are not yet capable of doing so. They can eat meals and
go to bed when they feel like it and watch as much television as they want. They do not have to
learn good manners or do any household chores. Although some permissive parents truly believe
that this style of child rearing is best, many others lack confidence in their ability to influence
their child’s behavior and are disorganized and ineffective in running their households (Berk,
1998). Children with permissive parents tend to have high self-esteem and good social skills but
are more prone to problem behavior. Accepting responsibility is difficult for many of them.
Uninvolved parenting styles rank lowest across all life domains. These children tend to lack self-
control, have low self-esteem and are less competent than their peers.
Children develop best when they have love and limits. If they are indulged or neglected and given
little guidance, they won’t learn self-control and may become quite selfish, unruly and lacking in
direction. And if they receive too much guidance, as the children of authoritarian parents do, they
will have few opportunities to learn self-reliance and may lack confidence in their own decision-
making abilities. In today’s complex world, men and women are not ascertained about how to
rear children as they were in previous generations. Clarifying parenting values and implementing
them in warm, supportive and appropriately demanding ways are crucial for the welfare of the
next generation and society.
Issue in parenting style:
The incompatibility of the parenting role with the working role is but one source of frustration for
fathers and mothers trying to raise their children. At least five reasons of frustration, which is
associated to parenting, might be identified (Lamanna and Riedmann, 2988):
1. Parenting today requires one to learn attitudes and techniques that are different from those of
2. Parents today rear their children in a pluralist society, characterized by diverse and conflicting
values; Parents are only one of several influences on children. Others are schools, peers,
television, movies, music, books and travel.
3. Parents feel anxious and guilty about their performance.
4. Changing goal from one best technique to another.
5. Society does not offer parents much psychological or social support.
Social class and parenting styles:
The ideas that parents have about parenting and the ways in which parents perform their
parenting functions differ across socioeconomic strata. Parents from different socioeconomic
strata rear their children differently, partly in response to the different circumstances in which
they live as well as ways of interacting with the world, including their children. Socioeconomic
status (SES) remains a topic of great interest to those who study children’s development. This
interest derives from a belief that high SES families afford their children an array of services,
goods, parental action, and social connections that potentially redound to the benefit of children
and a concern that many low SES children lack access to those same resources and experiences,
thus putting them at risk for developmental problems (Bradley and Corwyn, 2002).
Parenting styles are shaped in part by socioeconomic factors. Middle class and lower class
parents often pursue different goals and emphasize different values in raising their children.
Compared to middle and upper class parents, lower and working class parents tend to (1) stress
obedience and respect for authority; (2) be more restrictive and authoritarian more frequently
using power assertive discipline; (3) reason with their children less frequently, and (4) show less
warmth and affection. Why might these differences in parenting behavior exist? Most
explanations center or the stresses associated with low income living and their effects on
Our explanation for the link between economic factors and parenting styles focuses on the skills
needed by workers in different occupations. Parents from lower socioeconomic groups may quite
sensibly emphasize obedience to authority figures because their job demands it. Middle and
upper class parents may reason with their children and stress individual initiative, curiosity and
creativity more because these are the attributes that count for business executives, professionals,
and other white collar workers. Both middle- and lower- income parents have devised styles of
parenting that are well adapted to the distinctive demands of their socio-cultural setting.
Changing Parenting Styles:
Historically child rearing had a strong parental orientation. That is parents tended to rear their
children according to their own needs and values. But over time, a transition from the parental to
the child orientation has been made (Bell, 1971). The study of human development has been
guided through most of its history by a simple parent effects model in which it is assumed that
influences in the family run by one way: from parent to child. But recent research also proved
that a child’s behavior influences the style of parenting his or her parents use.
A child effects model of family influence highlights instances in which children influence their
parents rather than vice versa. Child’s antisocial behavior elicit coercive and ineffective parenting
style from parents at the same time that ineffective parenting style elicit antisocial behavior from
the child, it becomes hard to say who is more influential. This scenario is best developed by a
transactional model of family influence. In which parent and child influence one another
reciprocally (Sigelman, 1999).
Like fashions seem to go in cycles. Yesterday’s parents feeling their own parents were too strict,
turned to self-demand schedules, child-centered homes, progressive education and more
indulgent concepts of child rearing. Now some parents are worried that today’s children are too
spoiled so are reacting to what they feel has been over permissiveness. It is evident that parenting
styles change from one generation to the next and that, parents often have to sort out conflicting
advice (Rice, 1979). A set of studies have clearly demonstrated that early child care-giving
patterns vary within India according to family size, class / caste, rural- urban, and even regional
differences (Sharma, 2003)
Malaysia reflects a multi-racial and multi-religious country with a population of 26.26 million. It includes
three major racial groups namely Malay, Chinese, Indian and the native tribal cultures. The proportion of
Malays, Chinese and Indian in Malaysia are 65%, 24.6% and 6.9%, respectively. The oldest resident, the
tribal peoples, amount about 5 percent of the total population and mainly live in East Malaysia/Borneo
(Krishnan, 2004). Malaysia is also a multi- religious nation and in accord with the Department of Statistic
Malaysia, (2001), Islam is the most extensively professed religion in Malaysia (60.4%) followed by other
religions such as Buddhism (19.2%), Christianity (9.1%), Hinduism (6.3%) and Confucianism/
Taoism/other traditional Chinese religion (2.6%). It could be seen that in Malaysia religion is highly
correspond with ethnicity.
As Malaysia represents a collectivist culture (Burns & Brady, 1992; Bochner, 1994), values such as
cooperation, helpfulness, obedience, dependence and interpersonal relationships are advanced in child
socialization (Kling, 1995). Family socialization begins as a process through which children practice and
learn ceremony, traditions, religion, and activities in their daily life (Krishnan, 2004). This practice is
stable with Baumrind (1980) who indicated that socialization is the process that prepares children to
obtain habits and values that help them too modify to their culture. In addition, these values are achieved
through intuition, training, and simulation.
In Malay culture, parents have very important roles in directing the children toward the right behavior
and attitude. Parents are also responsible for transmitting the teachings of religion and culture to their
children. Malay parents are regarded as clear authority figures and are obeyed without question. They pay
attention to the spiritual growth in the development of the children.
The revealing of worldwide culture by the media which introduces Western behavior to the young, have
challenged Malay traditional parents. For these parents who are mostly trained by traditional norms,
Western behaviors are unacceptable practice. Although a majority of Malay parents tend to uphold this
tradition, there are however, some who may not totally reject the Western behavior pattern (Kling, 1995).
Nonetheless, Malays continue to focus on values such as unity, sharing, and caring for others.
Among Chinese families, interactions between parent and child differ from one age period to another.
Parents tend to be more merciful toward infants and young children because they are considered as Tung-
shih or too young to understand things. In contrast, parents treat older children in a harsh and strict
manner and also expect them to control their emotions and impulses. Beginning around middle childhood
and early adolescence children meet some difficulties and conflicts with their parent’s increasing
expectations towards them. Amazingly, the term “storm and stress” which is notable in the period of
adolescence in Western societies, has not been observed in Chinese adolescence (Ho, 1981). Carlson et
al. (2004) showed an agreement among Chinese-Malaysians that Chinese medium school students are
more disciplined, obtained higher academic scores and value their Chinese cultural beliefs.
For the Chinese, dependency has been sustained when reaching the age of tung-shih. Parents have to
approve the major decisions of their children such as career and marriage. Shek (1998) found that there
are some differences in parenting of the children according to their gender. Parents seem to have an
authoritarian relationship with their sons; fathers also have concern rules as well as demand teaching for
their sons than daughters.
The structure of the Indian families has been described as patriarchal, patrilineal, and patrilocal (Sheth,
1995). Indian parents tend to stress on respect, obedience and high academic achievement in their
children. Furthermore, they encourage their children to control themselves, be patient and not yield to
passion (Sala, 2002). Child’s independence is considered as a threat to the parents. In Indian families,
parents have different behaviors towards their sons and daughters. Parents protect their female children
more than males. Additionally, children, particularly girls, are inhibited from showing decisive behavior
It can be concluded that parenting style could be regarded as a global construct reflecting the overall
emotional climate between parents and children. Parental behavior and involvement plays a crucial role
in the development of social and cognitive competence in children. Parenting behaviors and their effects
may vary depending on different culture. It means that the ways in which family members interact with
each other are influenced by the culture of the society. Every culture and civilization develops a definite
pattern for raising children and what counts as good or adoptive in one culture can be viewed as
maladaptive in another society. For example, Asian culture is considered to be group- oriented as
individuals are taught to cooperate with the larger unit (family, community, country). Therefore,
encouragement of independence and pursuit of Western society would be seen as poor parenting in
traditional Asian society like Malaysia. Hence, parenting styles may have different consequences for
children’s development across different cultures.
Malaysian parents are from the collectivist group and accept the collectivist values.
Consequently, most of them tend to use authoritarian parenting as normative for rearing their
children and to promote optimal development. In this collectivist group, authoritarian parenting
does not necessarily reflect a negative style of parenting. In contrast, authoritarian parenting in
individualistic society represents a negative style of parenting since it is changeable with its
culture’s norms. Thus, the meaning of the parenting styles is more likely to be based on the norm
in one’s own culture.
The overall statements which was used in this study was comparing different cultures and
religions and how they take care of their children and how they dealt with them.
Previous studies also shown that Muslim community are so strict while raising their children
(Salasiah Khairollah, 2011), and teaching them about worship, knowledge, and trust. There are
different way and different method for parents to react with their children and their problems.
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