The impact of aggressive parental disciplinary strategies implemented in childhood on externalizing and internalizing problem behaviour in early adulthood

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Taillieu, Tamara L.
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Parental use of aggressive discipline, specifically corporal punishment (CP) and psychological aggression (PA), has been shown to increase the risk of problem behaviours in children and adolescents. A major gap in the research concerns our lack of understanding regarding how CP and PA contribute to adverse development in adulthood. Because these techniques do not occur in isolation, a number of protective factors were also considered. Both CP and PA were associated with lower levels of parental warmth/support and responsiveness, and more inconsistency in discipline; whereas high induction was associted with more frequent CP and PA. CP predicted later partner violence, and PA predicted anxiety and lower self-esteem in adulthood, even after the effects of positive parenting were considered. These findings suggest that not only do CP and PA tend to occur within environments that are less conducive to positive development, but also predict problematic outcomes in adulthood even after protective factors are considered.
corporal punishment, psychological aggression, discipline, long-term development, positive parenting