Kids of happy parents to have better relationships in future

Wednesday, 2 May 2018 (09:46 IST)
New Delhi: Children who grow up in a positive environment, with parents providing reasons for decisions and refraining from harsh punishments, tend to have better relationship problem-solving skills and less-violent romantic relationships as adults. Warm, nurturing parents may pass along strategies for building and maintaining positive relationships to their kids, setting them up for healthier, less-violent romantic relationships as young adults, according to researchers. According to Mengya Xia, graduate student in Penn State Human Development and Family Studies, "Family relationship is the first intimate relationship of your life, and you apply what you learn to later relationships.

Researchers have found in a recent study that when adolescents reported a positive family climate and parental advice on key issues, they tend to form and maintain healthy relationships, lead a more satisfied life and become better parents later. 'It's also where you may learn how to constructively communicate - or perhaps the inverse, to yell and scream - when you have a disagreement. Those are the skills you learn from the family and you will apply in later relationships." The study, which recently got published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, involved 974 adolescents, studying between sixth and ninth grade.

The researchers found that a positive family climate and effective parenting in adolescence were associated with better problem-solving skills in young adults' romantic relationships. Additionally, kids who had more positive engagement with their parents during adolescence, reported feeling more love and connection in their young adult relationships. "I think it was very interesting that we found that positive engagement with parents in adolescence was linked with romantic love in early adulthood. This is important because love is the foundation for romantic relationships, it's the core component, Science Daily quoted Ms Xia as saying.

The researchers also found that a more cohesive and organised family climate and more effective parenting during adolescence was associated with a lower risk of violence in young adult relationships. "Adolescents from families that are less cohesive and more conflictual may be less likely to learn positive-problem solving strategies or engage in family interaction affectionately. So in their romantic relationships, they are also less likely to be affectionate and more likely to use destructive strategies when they encounter problems, like violence," she added.

Ms Xia said the findings suggest ways to help adolescents build positive relationship skills at an early age, including encouraging assertiveness. "In the study, we saw kids who were more assertive had better problem-solving skills in their later relationships, which is so important. If you can't solve a problem constructively, you may turn to negative strategies, which could include violence. So I think it's important to promote constructive problem solving as a way to avoid or diminish the possibility of someone resorting to destructive strategies in a relationship," she added. (UNI)

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