Perfectionism In Children

1970 Words 8 Pages
Often the first relationship that a child has is with his or her parents. This relationship is key in a child 's life because it paves the way for future relationships with peers and other adults. However, many parents do not realize just how much their actions influence their children. Children often begin mirroring the behaviors of their parents. However, depending on the parent, these behaviors can be either positive or negative. By separating these behaviors, scientists came up with three types of parents: permissive, authoritative, and authoritarian. Permissive parents offer very little interest or guidance to their children, displaying a very hands-off, lax view of parenting. And the other two styles, while they have extremely similar …show more content…
Generally, perfectionism is discussed in a negative way. A few examples of negative effects normally associated with perfectionism are inflexibility, low self- confidence, and high sensitivity to criticism. Science has found a link between parenting styles and perfectionism. When a group of scientists from California State University studied group of parents and parenting styles, they found that the authoritarian parenting style often fostered the development of negative perfectionistic behaviors. The children started to avoid "difficult challenges simply because they are afraid of failure and criticism from parents" (Hibbard and Walton 275). When parents expect nothing else out of their children except success, then naturally the kids will start to expect nothing less from themselves as well. However, expecting nothing from them at all is not the solution either. When observing permissive parents, the scientists found similar results where the children adopted negative behaviors linked to perfectionism. This occurs because while parents may have exhibited warmth to the children, the standards put in place were set very low. (Hibbard and Walton 275). When parents fail to set high goals, children are not motivated to achieve anything noteworthy. While this lack of motivation may be acceptable at home, it will eventually bleed out to affect other parts of …show more content…
And personality can be both innate and influenced by parents. By understanding how these factors are linked together, parents can see how they affect how their child 's social abilities. For example, a Greek study found that high levels of neuroticism, or the tendency to be in a negative emotional state, caused children to display an increased vulnerability to harsh parental criticism (Lianos 118). The natural tendency of the child to be in a negative state paired with harsh disciplinary treatment inhibits the child socially. He or she ends up having a harder time finding acceptance among his or her peers, overvaluing other 's opinions, and willing to do anything to fit in. The Greek scientists also found that when children displaying low levels of agreeableness had overprotective, extremely strict parents, the children often lacked social competence (Lianos 118). Even though the negative effects of harsh parenting on children on personality have been discussed previously, this study shows how preexisting personality factors interacts with method negatively impacts the child, especially when considering innate personalities. Since the child already showed lower levels of interpersonal skills, harsh parenting further handicaps the child. Lastly, the same study analyzed extroversion in regards to social relationships. The researchers found that the children with high levels of extraversion who

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