The Indulgent Parenting Style and Developmental Outcomes in South European and Latin American Countries

  • Fernando GarcíaEmail author
  • Enrique Gracia
Part of the Science Across Cultures: The History of Non-Western Science book series (SACH, volume 7)


This chapter reviews recent literature analysing relationships between parenting styles and developmental outcomes. As opposed to traditional results obtained with Euro-American samples, evidence from emergent research in South European and Latin American countries indicates that adolescents from indulgent families scored equal or even better than those from authoritative families in many key indicators of psychosocial adjustment, and that the indulgent parenting appears as the optimum parenting style in these samples. This research suggests that authoritative parenting is not always necessarily associated with optimum developmental outcomes and that relationships between parenting styles and developmental outcomes also depend on the ethnic and cultural context where the socialization process takes place. Further research based in sound parenting science is needed to understand socialization processes better across different ethnic and cultural backgrounds.


Parenting Style Parenting Practice Psychological Control Psychosocial Adjustment Parental Socialization 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Alonso-Geta, P. M. P. (2012). Parenting style in Spanish parents with children aged 6 to 14. Psicothema, 24, 371–376.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Alsheikh, N., Parameswaran, G., & Elhoweris, H. (2010). Parenting style, self-esteem and student performance in the United Arab Emirates. Current Issues in Education, 13, 1–26.Google Scholar
  3. Amato, R. P., & Fowler, F. (2002). Parenting practices, child adjustment, and family diversity. Journal of Marriage and Family, 64, 703–716.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Arrindell, W. A., Sanavio, E., Aguilar, G., Sica, C., Hatzichristou, C., Eisemann, M., Recinos, L. A., Gaszner, P., Peter, M., Battagliese, G., Kállai, J., & Van der Ende, J. (1999). The development of a short form of the EMBU: Its appraisal with students in Greece, Guatemala, Hungary and Italy. Personality and Individual Differences, 27, 613–628.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Arrindell, W. A., Akkerman, A., Bagés, N., Feldman, L., Caballo, V. E., Oei, T. P. S., Torres, B., Canalda, G., Castro, J., Montgomery, I., Davis, M., Calvo, M. G., Kenardy, J. A., Palenzuela, D. L., Richards, J. C., Leong, C. C., Simón, M. A., & Zaldívar, F. (2005). The Short-EMBU in Australia, Spain, and Venezuela: Factorial invariance and associations with sex roles, self-esteem, and Eysenckian personality dimensions. European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 21, 56–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Aunola, K., Stattin, H., & Nurmi, J. E. (2000). Parenting styles and adolescents’ achievement strategies. Journal of Adolescence, 23, 205–222. doi: 10.1006/jado.2000.0308.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Bahr, S. J., & Hoffmann, J. P. (2010). Parenting style, religiosity, peers, and adolescent heavy drinking. Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 71, 539–543.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Baldwin, A. L. (1955). Behavior and development in childhood. New York: Dryden.Google Scholar
  9. Barber, B. K. (1996). Parental psychological control: Revisiting a neglected construct. Child Development, 67, 3296–3319.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Barton, A. L., & Kirtley, M. S. (2012). Gender differences in the relationships among parenting styles and college student mental health. Journal of American College Health, 60, 21–26. doi: org/10.1080/07448481.2011.555933.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Bastaits, K., Ponnet, K., & Mortelmans, D. (2012). Parenting of divorced fathers and the association with children’s self-esteem. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 41(12), 1643–1656. doi: 10.1007/s10964-012-9783-6.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Baumrind, D. (1967). Child cares practices anteceding three patterns of preschool behaviour. Genetic Psychology Monographs, 75, 43–88.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Baumrind, D. (1971). Harmonious parents and their preschool children. Developmental Psychology, 4, 99–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Baumrind, D. (1991). Parent styles and adolescent development. In J. Brooks-Gunn, R. Lerner, & A. C. Petersen (Eds.), The encyclopedia of adolescence (pp. 746–758). New York: Garland.Google Scholar
  15. Becker, W. C. (1964). Consequences of different kinds of parental discipline. In M. L. Hoffman & L. W. Hoffman (Eds.), Review of child development research (Vol. 1, pp. 169–208). New York: Russell Sage.Google Scholar
  16. Becoña, E., Martínez, Ú., Calafat, A., Juan, M., Fernández-Hermida, J. R., & Secades-Villa, R. (2012). Parental styles and drug use: A review. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, 19, 1–10. doi: 10.3109/09687637.2011.631060.Google Scholar
  17. Benchaya, M. C., Bisch, N. K., Moreira, T. C., Ferigolo, M., & Barros, H. M. T. (2011). Non-authoritative parents and impact on drug use: The perception of adolescent children. Jornal de Pediatria, 87, 238–244.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Berns, R. M. (2011). Child, family, school, community: Socialization and support (9th ed.). Wadsworth: Cengage.Google Scholar
  19. Cerdá, J. C. M., Rodríguez, M. A. P., Danet, A., Azarola, A. R., Toyos, N. G., & Román, P. R. (2010). Parent’s positioning towards alcohol consumption in 12 to 17 years old adolescents from six urban areas in Spain. Gaceta Sanitaria, 24, 53–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Chao, R. K. (1994). Beyond parental control and authoritarian parenting style: Understanding Chinese parenting through the cultural notion of training. Child Development, 65, 1111–1119.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Chao, R. K. (2001). Extending research on the consequences of parenting style for Chinese Americans and European Americans. Child Development, 72(6), 1832–1843. doi: 0009-3920/2001/7206-0014.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Cohen, D. A., & Rice, J. (1997). Parenting styles, adolescent substance use, and academic achievement. Journal of Drug Education, 27(2), 199–211.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Darling, N., & Steinberg, L. (1993). Parenting style as context: An integrative model. Psychological Bulletin, 113, 487–496. doi: 10.1037/0033-2909.113.3.4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. De la Torre, M. J., Casanova, P. F., García, M. C., Carpio, M. V., & Cerezo, M. T. (2011). Parenting styles and stress in students of compulsory secondary education. Behavioral Psychology-Psicología Conductual, 19, 577–590.Google Scholar
  25. Delgado, A. O., Jiménez, Á. P., Sánchez-Queija, I., & Gaviño, F. L. (2007). Maternal and paternal parenting styles: Assessment and relationship with adolescent adjustment. Anuario de Psicología, 23, 49–56.Google Scholar
  26. Dwairy, M., & Achoui, M. (2006). Introduction to three cross-regional research studies on parenting styles, individuation, and mental health in Arab societies. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 221–229. doi: 10.1177/0022022106286921.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Dwairy, M., & Menshar, K. E. (2006). Parenting style, individuation, and mental health of Egyptian adolescents. Journal of Adolescence, 29, 103–117. doi: 10.1016/j. adolescence.2005.03.002.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserfe, R., & Farah, A. (2006a). Parenting styles, individuation, and mental health of Arab adolescents: A third cross-regional research study. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 262–272. doi: 10.1177/0022022106286924.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserie, R., & Farah, A. (2006b). Adolescent-family connectedness among Arabs: A second cross-regional research study. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 248–261. doi: 10.1177/0022022106286923.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserie, R., Farah, A., Sakhleh, A. A., Fayad, M., & Khan, H. K. (2006c). Parenting styles in Arab societies: A first cross-regional research study. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37, 230–247. doi: 10.1177/ 002202 210 62 86922.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Espino, J. M. G. (2013). Two sides of intensive parenting: Present and future dimensions in contemporary relations between parents and children in Spain. Childhood: A Global Journal of Child Research, 20, 22–36. doi: 10.1177/0907568212445225.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Fontaine, A. M., Campos, B., Musitu, G., & García, F. (1994). Family functioning, educational climate and parent-child relations [Fonctions de la famille, climat éducatif et relations parents-enfants]. In P. Durning & J. P. Pourtois (Eds.), Éducation et famille (pp. 58–80). Bruxelles: De Boeck.Google Scholar
  33. Garaigordobil, M., & Aliri, J. (2012). Parental socialization styles, parents’ educational level, and sexist attitudes in adolescence. Spanish Journal of Psychology, 15, 592–603.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. García, F., & Gracia, E. (2009). Is always authoritative the optimum parenting style? Evidence from Spanish families. Adolescence, 44(173), 101–131.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  35. García, F., & Gracia, E. (2010). What is the optimum parental socialisation style in Spain? A study with children and adolescents aged 10-14 years. Infancia y Aprendizaje, 33, 365–384.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. García, J. F., Gracia, E., Fuentes, M. C., Lila, M., & Pascual, J. (2010). Educational innovation in research methodology: Improving students’ scientific skills and attitudes. Escritos de Psicología, 3(4), 1–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Gavazzi, S. M. (2011). Families with adolescents: Bridging the gaps between theory, research, and practice. New York: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. García, F., Molpeceres, M. Á., Musitu, G., Allatt, P., Fontaine, A. M., Campos, B., & Arango, G. (1994). Assessment of family socialization. In G. Musitu & P. Allatt (Eds.), Psychology of the family (pp. 295–320). Valencia: Editorial Albatros.Google Scholar
  39. Gracia, E., García, F., & Lila, M. (2007). Family socialization and psychosocial adjustment: A transversal analysis through three psychological disciplines [Socialización familiar y ajuste psicosocial: un análisis transversal desde tres disciplinas de la psicología]. Valencia: PUV.Google Scholar
  40. Gracia, E., Fuentes, M. C., & García, F. (2010). Neighborhood risk, parental socialization styles, and adolescent conduct problems. Intervención Psicosocial, 19, 265–278.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Gracia, E., Fuentes, M. C., García, F., & Lila, M. (2012). Perceived neighborhood violence, parenting styles, and developmental outcomes among Spanish adolescents. Journal of Community Psychology, 40, 1004–1021.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Grusec, J. E., Rudy, D., & Martini, T. (1997). Parenting cognitions and child outcomes: An overview and implications for children’s internalization of values. In J. E. Grusec & L. Kuczynski (Eds.), Parenting and children’s internalization of values: A handbook of contemporary theory (pp. 259–282). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  43. Hindin, M. J. (2005). Family dynamics, gender differences and educational attainment in Filipino adolescents. Journal of Adolescence, 28, 299–316.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  44. Kazemi, A., Ardabili, H. E., & Solokian, S. (2010). The association between social competence in adolescents and mothers’ parenting style: A cross sectional study on Iranian girls. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, 27, 395–403. doi: 10.1007/s 10560-010-0213-x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Kovacs, E., & Piko, B. F. (2010). Does religion count? Religiousness and family life among Hungarian high school students. In C. L. Goossens (Ed.), Family life: Roles, bonds and impact (pp. 139–155). Hauppauge: Nova.Google Scholar
  46. Kremers, S. P., Brug, J., de Vries, H., & Engels, R. C. M. E. (2003). Parenting style and adolescent fruit consumption. Appetite, 41, 43–50.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  47. Lamborn, S. D., Mounts, N. S., Steinberg, L., & Dornbusch, S. M. (1991). Patterns of competence and adjustment among adolescents from authoritative, authoritarian, indulgent, and neglectful families. Child Development, 62, 1049–1065. doi: 10.1111/j. 1467-8624.1991.tb01588.x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  48. Levine, L. E., & Munsch, J. (2010). Child development: An active learning approach. Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  49. Liem, J. H., Cavell, E. C., & Lustig, K. (2010). The influence of authoritative parenting during adolescence on depressive symptoms in young adulthood: Examining the mediating roles of self-development and peer support. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 171, 73–92. doi: 10.1080/00221320903300379.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. Lila, M., & Gracia, E. (2005). Determinantes de la aceptacion-rechazo parental [Determinants of parental acceptance-rejection]. Psicothema, 17, 107–111.Google Scholar
  51. Lila, M., García, F., & Gracia, E. (2007). Perceived paternal and maternal acceptance and children’s outcomes in Colombia. Social Behavior and Personality, 35, 115–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. López-Jáuregui, A., & Oliden, P. E. (2009). Adaptation of the ESPA29 parental socialization styles scale to the Basque language: Evidence of validity. Spanish Journal of Psychology, 12, 737–745.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. Maccoby, E. E., & Martin, J. A. (1983). Socialization in the context of the family: Parent-child interaction. In P. H. Mussen (Ed.), Handbook of child psychology (Vol. 4, pp. 1–101). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  54. Marchetti, B. (1997). Self-concept and revisiting live in old age [Concetto di se’relazioni familiari e valori]. Master’s thesis, University of Bologna, Italy. Retrieved from II Ponte Vecchio.Google Scholar
  55. Martínez, I., & García, J. F. (2007). Impact of parenting styles on adolescents’ self-esteem and internalization of values in Spain. Spanish Journal of Psychology, 10, 338–348.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  56. Martínez, I., & García, J. F. (2008). Internalization of values and self-esteem among Brazilian teenagers from authoritative, indulgent, authoritarian, and neglectful homes. Adolescence, 43(169), 13–29.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  57. Martínez, I., García, J. F., & Yubero, S. (2007). Parenting styles and adolescents’ self-esteem in Brazil. Psychological Reports, 100, 731–745. doi: 10.2466/pr0.100.3.731-745.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  58. Martínez, I., García, J. F., Camino, L., & Camino, C. P. S. (2011). Parental socialization: Brazilian adaptation of the ESPA29 scale [Socialização parental: adaptação ao Brasil da escala ESPA29]. Psicologia: Reflexão e Crítica, 24, 640–647.Google Scholar
  59. Martínez, I., García, F., Musitu, G., & Yubero, S. (2012). Family socialization practices: Factor confirmation of the Portuguese version of a scale for their measurement. Revista de Psicodidáctica, 17, 159–178.Google Scholar
  60. Montgomery, C., Fisk, J. E., & Craig, L. (2008). The effects of perceived parenting style on the propensity for illicit drug use: The importance of parental warmth and control. Drug and Alcohol Review, 27, 640–649. doi: 10.1080/09595230802392790.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  61. Musitu, G., & García, J. F. (2001). Escala de Socialización Parental en la Adolescencia (ESPA29). Madrid: TEA Ediciones.Google Scholar
  62. Musitu, G., & García, J. F. (2004). Consecuencias de la socialización familiar en la cultura española [Consequences of the family socialization in the Spanish culture]. Psicothema, 16, 297–302.Google Scholar
  63. Perris, C., Jacobsson, L., Lindström, G., von Knorring, L., & Perris, H. (1980). Development of a new inventory for assessing memories of parental rearing behaviour. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavia, 61, 265–274.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Puskar, K. R., Bernardo, L. M., Ren, D., Haley, T. M., Tark, K. H., Switala, J., & Siemon, L. (2010). Self-esteem and optimism in rural youth: Gender differences. Contemporary Nurse, 34, 190–198.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  65. Radziszewska, B., Richardson, J. L., Dent, C. W., & Flay, B. R. (1996). Parenting style and adolescent depressive symptoms, smoking, and academic achievement: Ethnic, gender, and SES differences. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 19(3), 289–305.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  66. Rohner, R. P. (1989). Parental Acceptance-Rejection I Control Questionnaire (PARQI Control). Storrs: Rohner Research.Google Scholar
  67. Rohner, R. P., & Khaleque, A. (2003). Reliability and validity of the parental control scale: A meta-analysis of cross-cultural and intracultural studies. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 34, 643–649.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Rohner, R. P., Saavedra, J., & Granum, E. O. (1978). Development and validation of the Parental Acceptance Rejection Questionnaire: Test manual. JSAS Catalogue of Selected Documents in Psychology, 8, 7–8.Google Scholar
  69. Rudy, D., & Grusec, J. E. (2001). Correlates of authoritarian parenting in individualist and collectivist cultures and implications for understanding the transmission of values. Journal of Cross Cultural Psychology, 32, 202–212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Schaefer, E. S. (1959). A circumplex model for maternal behavior. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 59, 226–235.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  71. Schaefer, E. S. (1965). Children’s reports of parental behavior: An inventory. Child Development, 36, 413–424.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  72. Sears, R. R., Maccoby, E. E., & Levin, H. (1957). Patterns of child rearing. Evanston: Row, Peterson.Google Scholar
  73. Sigelman, C. K., & Rider, E. A. (2012). Life-span human development (7th ed.). Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company.Google Scholar
  74. Silk, J. S., Morris, A. S., Kanaya, T., & Steinberg, L. (2003). Psychological control and autonomy granting: Opposite ends of a continuum or distinct constructs? Journal of Research on Adolescence, 13, 113–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Smetana, J. G. (1995). Parenting styles and conceptions of parental authority during adolescence. Child Development, 66, 299–316.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  76. Spera, C. (2005). A review of the relationship among parenting practices, parenting styles, and adolescent school achievement. Educational Psychology Review, 17, 125–146. doi: 10.1007/s10648-005-3950-1.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Steinberg, L. (2005). Psychological control: Style or substance? In J. G. Smetana (Ed.), New directions for child and adolescent development: Changes in parental authority during adolescence (pp. 71–78). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  78. Steinberg, L., Elmen, J. D., & Mounts, N. S. (1989). Authoritative parenting, psychosocial maturity, and academic success among adolescents. Child Development, 60(6), 1424–1436.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  79. Steinberg, L., Lamborn, S. D., Dornbusch, S. M., & Darling, N. (1992). Impact of parenting practices on adolescent achievement: Authoritative parenting, school involvement, and encouragement to succeed. Child Development, 63, 1266–1281.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  80. Steinberg, L., Lamborn, S. D., Darling, N., Mounts, N. S., & Dornbusch, S. M. (1994). Over-time changes in adjustment and competence among adolescents from authoritative, authoritarian, indulgent, and neglectful families. Child Development, 65, 754–770. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.1994.tb00781.x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  81. Symonds, P. M. (1939). The psychology of parent-child relationships. New York: Appleton.Google Scholar
  82. Turkel, Y. D., & Tezer, E. (2008). Parenting styles and learned resourcefulness of Turkish adolescents. Adolescence, 43(169), 143–152.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  83. Villalobos, J. A., Cruz, A. V., & Sanchez, P. R. (2004). Parental styles and psychosocial development in high school students. Revista Mexicana de Psicologia, 21, 119–129.Google Scholar
  84. Weiten, W., Dunn, D. S., & Hammer, E. Y. (2012). Psychology applied to modern life: Adjustment in the 21st century (10th ed.). Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company.Google Scholar
  85. White, J., & Schnurr, M. P. (2012). Developmental psychology. In F. T. L. Leong, W. E. Pickren, M. M. Leach, & A. J. Marsella (Eds.), Internationalizing the psychology curriculum in the United States (pp. 51–73). New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  86. Wolfradt, U., Hempel, S., & Miles, J. N. V. (2003). Perceived parenting styles, depersonalization, anxiety and coping behaviour in adolescents. Personality and Individual Differences, 34, 521–532.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Methodology of the Behavioral SciencesUniversity of ValenciaValenciaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Social PsychologyUniversity of ValenciaValenciaSpain

Personalised recommendations