Furthermore, it has been proven that parental influence also has an influence on driving among their teenage offspring (Crawford-Faucker, 2009). According to the National Young Driver Survey (involving 5,665 students in grades 9 through 11) parenting styles had a definite impact on choices the young drivers made (Crawford-Faucker, 2009). The authoritative parenting style combining emotional support with clear rules and monitoring had a definite (and positive) influence on driving-related behaviours and other attitudes among adolescents (Crawford-Faucker, 2009). These teens had a lower crash risk, experienced fewer crashes as passengers and were twice as likely to wear seat belts as a driver (or passenger) then were teens with uninvolved parents (Crawford-Faucker, 2009). Furthermore, this group reported less alcohol use
But harsh verbal and physical discipline isn’t necessary the way to go, either. McKee et al (2007) studied harsh verbal and physical discipline and child problem behaviours in a sample of 2,582 parents and their fifth and sixth grade children. The findings indicated that the harsh discipline was associated with child behaviour problems, with one dimension of positive parenting – parental warmth – helping to buffer children from the more detrimental influences of the harsher physical discipline (McKee et al, 2007).
In this section that parents have a huge influence on their kids, whether those kids are tiny, helpless infants or defiant teenagers. Children tend to mimic their parents, for better or for worse. Some years ago, the organization Partnership for a Drug-Free America aired a series of advertisements showing a father breaking into his son’s room, drug paraphernalia in his hands. “Where did you get this?” the father thunders. “Where did you get this and how do you know about it?””I know about it by watching you!” the son cries out. “I watched you do it!”
The point of the commercial, of course, is that children will take their cues from their parents. If parents act in a responsible manner and own up to a mistake or problem situation, children will take that same cue. If, however, parents are carelessness and put the blame on other people for their own mistakes, children will do the same things.