Study: Arguing Parents Can Damage a Child’s Life Chances

A new study has revealed that children who witness conflict between their parents can have poorer long-term life chances. Moreover, in extreme cases, these children can even become suicidal.

According to the researchers at the University of Sussex, arguments between parents, even if they are no longer in a relationship, can negatively affect their children. In addition, unresolved tension between them can have an impact on the long-term mental health and well-being of a child.

parents fighting

Children who witness conflict between their parents can have poorer long-term life chances.
Photo Credit: Framepool

Furthermore, the team found that parents who engage in conflict are more agressive and less responsive to their children. This can negatively affect a child’s academic performance as well, and also affect their social and emotional skills.

In worse cases where children are exposed to extreme, long-term and on-going conflict between their parents, these children can become aggresive, hostile and violent. Other children can develop low self-esteem, anxiety and depression. The researchers also said that some children can even become suicidal.

The Early Intervention Foundation (EIF), a charity which worked with the university on the research, said that positive relationships between parents is neglected by maternity, children’s and family services.  However, EIF also pointed out that it is possible to improve relationships based on the programs run outside of UK, and improved relationships between parents have positive outcome for the children as well.

Carey Oppenheim, EIF Chief Executive, stated that inter-parental conflict does not only affect young children, but also children of all ages.

On a final note, Gordon Harold, a professor from the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex, stated that the parents’ relationship crucially affects the general wellbeing and future of a child.

Relationships between parents is “one of the strongest influences on children’s long-term mental health, wellbeing and future life chances.”

Study Reveals How Arguing In Front of Kids Affect Children

A study conducted by the University of East Anglia revealed that teenagers who experienced family discord during their formative years (from birth to the age of 11) had a smaller volume of gray matter in the brain, particularly the cerebellum. (This has been linked to impaired learning, anxiety, schizophrenia, depression and bipolar).

Every parent should remember that their action can greatly influence a child’s well-being. Whether it be positive or negative, every action that they take can make or break a child’s state of health.

Please read: Parents’ Debts May Affect the Children’s Emotional Well-being

Source: Independent

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