Parents verbal aggression may undermine kids self-esteemAugust 5th, 2008 - 12:32 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Aug 5 (ANI): Parents who are verbally aggressive towards their kids during playtime and other daily activities may actually be undermining kids self-esteem and making them less cooperative, says a new Purdue University study.
“It’’s hard to tell parents how to interact with their children based on one study, but what we see here is that parents who have a propensity for being verbally aggressive have a tendency to try to direct and control their children during a play period,” said Steven R. Wilson, a professor of communication who specializes in family issues.
“As a result, these children were less cooperative, and not only are parents setting up situations that are challenging for them to handle, but they also are subtly undermining their child’’s self-esteem, he added.
Wilson and Felicia Roberts, an associate professor of communication, are lead authors of a study that appears in the July issue of Human Communication Research journal.
In the study, the research team videotaped 40 mothers as they played with one of their children, ages 3-8, during a 10-minute, unstructured play period. The mothers also completed a series of questionnaires to assess their general tendency to be verbally aggressive toward others. For example, someone who is verbally aggressive is likely to insult others as a way to motivate them to comply or behave.
From the analysis, the researchers found that mothers who were high in the general tendency to be verbally aggressive often tried to take control of the play period. For example, the four mothers with the highest verbal aggression scores on average were attempting to direct their child’’s actions once every 12 seconds, while the four mothers with the lowest verbal aggression scores tried to do so only about half as often.
In addition to verbally aggressive mothers telling a child to play with a different toy or to stop playing, they also used negative body language, such as restraining a child by the wrist or shoulder, to reinforce their commands.
“Of course all parents direct their children, and people in general are always directing others to close a door or hand them something,” said Roberts, who has a background in linguistics and is a conversational analyst.
“It’’s something we do all the time. But there is a qualitative difference in the kinds of directing going on by these verbally aggressive mothers. By looking at how and when directives occurred, not just how often, we found that moms who scored highest on verbal aggression used directives to control the child and, ultimately, the way the game or activity was played. The aggressive action is not overt, as in a parent hitting or yelling, but these small negative maneuvers can say so much to a child, Roberts added. (ANI)
- Verbal aggression against kids may affect their behaviour - Aug 05, 2008
- Verbally aggressive mums control their kids behaviour, choices - Jul 10, 2008
- Self-esteem rises as people age but starts declining around retirement - Apr 02, 2010
- Stressed-out moms likely to worsen child's asthma - Oct 07, 2010
- Young Folks Crave Self-Esteem Even More Than Sexual Activities, As Per A New Psychological Study - Jan 12, 2011
- Higher income, better health key to self-esteem - Apr 02, 2010
- Shedding pounds won't help teens' self-esteem - Mar 23, 2012
- Warm parenting offers hope for callous, unemotional kids - Jul 25, 2012
- Parents who share caregiving for their kids 'experience more conflict' - Jan 27, 2011
- Parents can help overweight kid with body image - Apr 26, 2010
- Inconsistent parental discipline creates anti-social kids - Feb 27, 2012
- Study: Children of Lesbian moms do well - Jun 08, 2010
- For young people, sex and paychecks come after self-esteem - Jan 07, 2011
- Mothers' hostility turns toddlers volatile, defiant - Oct 28, 2011
- Playing video games won't make you fat - Jan 21, 2011
Tags: associate professor, felicia, four mothers, human communication research, negative body language, parents, playtime, propensity, purdue university study, questionnaires, self esteem, steven r wilson, tendency, verbal aggression