Coronavirus

Parental satisfaction decreases through exhaustion and feelings of guilt

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The Corona crisis has turned the everyday life of families in Germany upside down. Not only important facilities such as schools and kindergartens have been closed for a long time, but also places that play an important role for families in their free time. Club, swimming pool or sports field – everything fell flat.

A large online survey conducted by the University of Hildesheim and Goethe University Frankfurt shows the effects of this exceptional situation on the satisfaction of family members.

Children are considered to be more satisfied before and during the pandemic

For the study “KiCo – Families with children under 15 and their experiences in the corona crisis”, the researchers surveyed over 25,000 parents from all 16 federal states.

The questionnaire enabled the researchers to receive information about the respective household and the satisfaction of the respondents, but also about their concerns and needs. On a scale from zero (totally unsatisfied) to ten (100 percent satisfied), the parents should assess themselves and their children (child 1 to child 5) with regard to their satisfaction in the crisis.

The results show that parents rate their children’s satisfaction in the Corona crisis on average as higher than their own: While mothers and fathers were very satisfied with an average value of 7.65 before the pandemic, Corona only reduced it to 4 , 9 – a drop of a good three points.

The results show that parents rate their children’s satisfaction in the Corona crisis on average as higher than their own: While mothers and fathers were very satisfied with an average value of 7.65 before the pandemic, Corona only reduced it to 4 , 9 – a drop of a good three points.

Even before the crisis, children’s values ​​were somewhat higher than those of their parents. On average, the parents indicated that their children were very satisfied with a score between 8.08 (child 5) and 8.32 (child 4). After the outbreak of the virus, these values ​​also fell somewhat.

“An interpretation suggests that child 1 (either the youngest or only child), according to the parent, is the most satisfied with the mood at home in the current situation,” the researchers explain.

The values ​​of child 1 have dropped from 8.21 to 6.06. According to the results, the third child is the most dissatisfied: its satisfaction values ​​have dropped from 8.31 to 5.25. But this value is still significantly higher than that of adults.

Financial worries and lack of retreat

As the experts explain, the room layout at home can play an important role. While almost all of the respondents’ children have a room where they can retreat undisturbed, only 40 percent of parents have this option. “Retreats are an important resource for all family members in order to switch off from the concentrated daily family life and finally to cope with the multiple burdens,” emphasize the experts.

Another reason why, according to the researchers, parents seem to be more affected by the situation is the new challenges: “Many mothers and fathers report their major burdens and want a stable and reliable infrastructure. Many mothers describe their situation as a bundle of exhaustion, feelings of guilt and fear of existence. ”

The pandemic has created new concerns for many families. Therefore, in addition to the satisfaction ratings, the scientists asked for various statements. The phrase “I have the impression that my worries are heard” was not approved by more than 30 percent and only a little by another 29 percent

The values ​​for the statements “I am worried about things that are happening in Germany” and “I feel well informed and supported by politics” make the problematic situation of many parents clear. The majority of respondents say they are concerned about the situation in Germany – and only a minority feel well informed and supported.

Often, financial resources during a pandemic also worry many parents. “The first evaluation unsurprisingly shows that families are very differently burdened with their financial resources and depend on support,” the experts explain. While 30 percent of respondents say they have no financial problems, 33.9 percent agree that they have had big money worries since Corona.

However, not all of the respondents’ statements were negative. For example, some parents have reported that they have had a good time with their children in the past few weeks. In addition, some families said they had fewer problems with leisure stress than before the crisis.

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