How to raise happy children
Researchers found parents who are less controlling raise happier kids.
By Livia Gamble
April 26 2017
Wanting your kids to be happy is a given but according to research, there’s one thing parents can to do to ensure this.
Mai Stafford, the lead author of the study said: "We found that people whose parents showed warmth and responsiveness had higher life satisfaction and better mental wellbeing throughout early, middle and late adulthood.
“By contrast, psychological control was significantly associated with lower life satisfaction and mental wellbeing."
Psychological control is where parents try to control the child's emotional state or beliefs. Examples include: invading a child’s privacy and not letting children make their own decisions.
Researchers tracked a group of more than 2,000 people to determine how different parenting styles affect happiness and wellbeing.
The results showed those who said their mum or dad controlled them psychologically scored lower on a range of happiness tests.
But, there were some problems with the research.
As Science Alerts points out, "so far the study only shows correlation, and doesn't provide any evidence that psychologically controlling parents directly impact the mental wellbeing of their kids.
"There are also some glaring issues with the research - mainly the fact that participants were asked to recall what their parents were like when they were children decades later, at the age of 43."
Which means, the possibility of "recall bias" is high.