Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 16–22

Parental Control: A Second Cross-Cultural Research on Parenting and Psychological Adjustment of Children

Original paper


Parental control is among the important factors influencing the psychological development of children. In addition to other questionnaires, a questionnaire of father and mother control was administered to adolescents in nine countries. The results showed that parental control differs across cultures. Parental control was higher in the eastern than western countries. Mothers, particularly in the west, are more controlling than fathers. Fathers’ rather than mothers’ control was associated with adolescents’ psychological disorders in the west, but not in the east. Inconsistent parental control was associated with psychological disorders.


Parental control Culture Inconsistency Psychological disorders 


  1. Alkernawi, A. (2000). Ethno-psychiatry in the Bedouin Arab society in the Negev (in Hebrew). Tel Aviv, Israel: Hakebutz Hameo’had.Google Scholar
  2. Alkernawi, A., & Graham, J. R. (1997). Spirit possession and exorcism in the treatment of a Bedouin-Arabic psychiatric patient. Clinical Social Work Journal, 25, 211–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barber, B. (1996). Parental psychological control: Revisiting a neglected construct. Child Development, 67, 3296–3319.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Baumrind, D. (1991). The influence of parenting style on adolescent competence and substance use. Journal of Early Adolescence, 11, 56–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Baumrind, D. (2005). Patterns of parental authority and adolescent autonomy. New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 108, 61–69.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Belsky, J., Rha, J. H., & Park, S. Y. (2000). Exploring reciprocal parent and child effects in US and Korean samples. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 24, 338–347.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bigner, J. J. (1994). Individual and family development: A life-span interdisciplinary approach. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  8. Braungart-Rieker, J., Garwood, M. M., & Stifter, C. A. (1997). Compliance and noncompliance: The roles of maternal control and child temperament. Journal of Applied Psychology, 18, 411–428.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Chao, R. K. (1994). Beyond parental control and authoritarian parenting style: Understanding Chinese parenting through the cultural notion of training. Child Development, 65, 1111–1120.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Chao, R. K. (2001). Extending research on the consequences of parenting style for Chinese Americans and European Americans. Child Development, 72, 1832–1843.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Dwairy, M. (1997). Personality, culture, and Arab society. Jerusalem: Al-Noor Press (in Arabic).Google Scholar
  12. Dwairy, M. (1998). Cross cultural counseling: The Arab Palestinian case. New York: Haworth Press.Google Scholar
  13. Dwairy, M. (2004). Parenting styles and psychological adjustment of Arab adolescents. Transcultural Psychiatry, 41, 233–252.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Dwairy, M. (2007). Parental inconsistency versus parental authoritarianism: Association with symptoms of psychological disorders. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. doi:10.1007/s10964-007-9169-3.
  15. Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserie, R., Farah, A., Ghazal, I., Fayad, M., et al. (2006a). Parenting styles in the Arab societies: A first cross-regional research study. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 230–247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserie, R., & Farah, A. (2006b). Parenting styles, individuation, and mental health of Arab adolescents: A third cross-regional research study. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 262–272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Eiden, R. D., Leonard, K. E., & Morrisey, S. (2001). Parental alcoholism and toddler noncompliance. Alcoholism, Clinical and Experimental Research, 25, 1621–1633.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Feldman, R., & Klein, P. S. (2003). Toddlers’ self-regulated compliance to mothers, caregivers, and fathers: Implications for theories of socialization. Developmental Psychology, 39, 680–692.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Fershani, L. (1998). Almoa’amalah alwalideyah wattijahat ala’bnaa’ lelenjaz (Parenting styles and siblings need for achievement). Unpublished Master Thesis, Department of Psychology, Algiers University, Algeria (Arabic text).Google Scholar
  20. Forward, S. (1989). Toxic parents: Overcoming their hurtful legacy and reclaiming your life. New York: Bantam Books.Google Scholar
  21. Garber, J., & Flynn, C. (2001). Vulnerability to depression in childhood and adolescence. In R. E. Ingram & J. M. Price (Eds.), Vulnerability to psychopathology: Risk across the lifespan (pp. 175–225). New York, NY: The Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  22. Kagitcibasi, C. (1970). Social norms and authoritarianism: A Turkish-American comparison. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 16, 444–451.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Kagitcibasi, C. (2005). Autonomy and relatedness in cultural context: Implications for self and family. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 3, 1–20.Google Scholar
  24. Karreman, A., Tuijl, C., Aken, M. A. G., & Dekovic, M. (2006). Parenting and self regulation in preschoolers: A meta-analysis. Infant and Child Development, 15, 561–579.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kochanska, G., & Knaack, A. (2003). Effortful control as a personality characteristic of young children: Antecedents, correlates, and consequences. Journal of Personality, 71, 1087–1112.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Leung, K., Lau, S., & Lam, W. L. (1998). Parenting styles and achievement: A cross-cultural study. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 44, 157–172.Google Scholar
  27. Maccoby, E. E., & Martin, J. A. (1983). Socialization in the context of the family: Parent-child interaction. In E. M. Hetherington (Ed.), Mussen manual of child psychology (vol. 4, 4th ed., pp 1–102). New York: Wiley and Sons.Google Scholar
  28. McWayne, C., Owsianik, M., Green, L., & Fantuzzo, J. (2008). Parenting behavior and preschool children’s social and emotional skills. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 23, 173–192.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Punamaki, R. L., Qouta, S., & El Sarraj, E. (1997). Relationships between traumatic events, children’s gender, and political activity, and perceptions of parenting styles. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 21, 91–109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Randolph, S. M. (1995). African American children in single-mother families. In B. J. Dickerson (Ed.), African American single mothers: Understanding their lives and families. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  31. Rohner, R. P., & Pettengill, S. M. (1985). Perceived parental acceptance-rejection and parental control among Korian adolescents. Child Development, 56, 524–528.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Sang, M. L., Daniels, M. H., & Kissinger, D. B. (2006). Parental influences on adolescent adjustment: Parenting styles versus parenting practices. Family Journal, 14, 253–259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Schaefer, E. S. (1965). Children’s reports of parental behavior: An inventory. Child Development, 36, 413–424.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Silverman, I. W., & Ragusa, D. M. (1990). Child and maternal correlates of impulse control in 24-month-old children. Genetic, Social, and General Psychology Monographs, 116, 437–473.Google Scholar
  35. Stansbury, K., & Zimmermann, L. K. (1999). Relations among child language skills, maternal socialization of emotion regulation and child behavior problems. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 30, 121–142.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  36. Steinberg, L. (1990). Autonomy, conflict, and harmony in the family relationship. In S. S. Feldman & G. R. Elliot (Eds.), At the threshold: The developing adolescent (pp. 255–276). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  37. Stewart, S. M., Bond, M. H., Kennard, B. D., & Zaman, R. M. (2002). Does the Chinese of guan export to the west? International Journal of Psychology, 37, 74–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Triandis, H. C. (1995). Individualism and collectivism. San Francisco: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  39. Weisz, J. R., Southam-Gerow, M. A., & McCarty, C. A. (2003). Control-related beliefs and depressive symptoms in clinic-referred children and adolescents: Developmental differences and model specificity. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 110, 97–109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Whitfield, C. L. (1987). Healing the child within: Discovery and recovery for adult children of dysfunctional families. Deerfield Beach, FL: Health Communications.Google Scholar
  41. Wood, J. J. (2006). Parental intrusiveness and children’s separation anxiety in clinical sample. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 37, 73–87.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  42. Zakareya, Kh. (Ed.). (1999). Derasat fi almojtamaa’ al A’rabi almoa’aser [Studies in the contemporary Arab Society]. Damascus, Syria: Al Ahali Publications (Arabic book).Google Scholar
  43. Zegheena, A. (1994). Asaleeb almoa’amalah alwalideyah mo’laqatoha waltawafuq alnafsi wal ijtimaa’i (Parenting styles and psycho-social adaptation). Unpublished masters thesis, Department of Psychology, Algiers University, Algeria.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nazareth ElitIsrael
  2. 2.King Fahd UniversityDhahranSaudi Arabia

Personalised recommendations