Due to the pandemic and the ongoing lockdown, many families are trapped in their own four walls for an extended period of time. This sometimes also harbors the potential for conflict. Researchers at the Leibniz Institute for Educational Research and Educational Information (DIPF) found in a new study that families in which parents support the autonomy of children can get through the corona lockdown better.
“Parents who gave their children the freedom to make decisions within certain limits did particularly well,” emphasizes study author Andreas Neubauer. The study also confirms the observation that shared daily experiences influence the well-being of family members.
Conversely, the well-being of the parents also had an impact on their further behavior towards the children: If they were not doing so well themselves, they tended to be more controlling the next day. If, on the other hand, they were in tune with themselves and the most important of their needs were met, then the next day they were more likely to encourage their child’s independence.
The first lockdown was seen by many as an enrichment
The results were carried out as part of an online survey among 970 people in April 2020. Accordingly, the participants increasingly came from the educational or affluent milieu. Therefore, the study is not representative of families in risk situations, said Neubauer.
Apparently, however, the initially very special pandemic situation also played a role. “Some of the parents we interviewed found the special phase in April to be an enrichment for their family life,” said Andreas Neubauer.
However, first impressions from a later survey of the same group of people in November 2020 would suggest that the parents’ perception has changed since then.