A study published in the latest issue of the journal Child Development claims that time spent by parents with their teenage kids will help boost the confidence of the adolescent.
This research was conducted at the Pennsylvania State University by Dr. Susan McHale and her associates in the Human development department.
The study was a product of the curiosity of investigators towards the link between the time spent by the parents with teenage children and its effect on the behavior of the teenagers.
Research in 16 school districts of Pennsylvania
A long term research was conducted on a large group of families from 16 school districts in the state of Pennsylvania. The period of research stretched to over a decade, with the researchers filling in questionnaires regarding the activities of the parents at home and their teenage children.
These personal interviews occurred at the frequency of 5 times during the 7 years of research. Thequestionnaires were based on a multiple choice format that helped in assigning points making theresults more measurable. The parameters for the study were well established prior to the commencement of the study and choosing the respondents.
Outcomes of the study
The questionnaires were subjected to statistical analysis at the end of the study period. The statistics revealed the following truths:
- When parents and their teenage children shared quality time together, such adolescents displayed positive self-esteem levels as compared to those who did not spend much time together.
- Father’s involvement with the children was more important to boosting the teenager’s confidence levels than that of the mother. This is more because a mother has a set role in the family and is invariably a caregiver. Children anyway look to her for help. But a father, if supportive and understanding is sure to be an added advantage.
- Another important fact that they noted was that the parents were more at ease while handling their second teenager than the first, simply as a matter of experience.
As reported by another researcher from Westchester County, there are a few loopholes in this research. The crowd is more semi-urban and the sample more unrepresentative of the big picture scenario. Hence the results cannot be extrapolated to the other regions of the country.
The final word
But as logic would have it, the fact remains that the more the interaction between parents and their adolescent children, the better is the chance of their emotional quotient being high. With the digital connect taking prominence, family time is taking a back seat and this research will definitely make parents take the initiative and collect their families and lead them to improved relationships.