Why You Should Stay Involved What the Research Shows

Swedish psychologists Mary Margaret Kerr and Hakan Stattin studied over a thousand fourteen-year-olds and their parents. What they found was that the more the parents knew about what their kids did, the better adjusted the kids: they were less delinquent, had fewer school problems, less depression, more positive expectations of life, more positive peers, and better relations with parents. The researchers discovered that it was those "spontaneous little disclosures"-those unplanned little nuggets of information that kids blurt out to their parents-that explained more of what was really happening in kids' lives than all the efforts parents made to monitor their kids or pry information out of them. And the more involved the parents were in their kids' lives, the more likely the kids were to share. The bottom line: not only does staying involved produce better-adjusted kids, but the very relationship keeps kids out of trouble. In fact, kids who feel that their parents are trying to control them by constantly monitoring their every move have worse relationships with their parents than kids who feel their parents trust them. In other words, Kerr and Stattin explain, "It is not so much what parents do, but what their kids tell them about" that makes the real difference. And that's what real mothering is.

0 0

Post a comment