authoritative parenting was associated with less of an increase in

Authoritative parenting was associated with less of

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authoritative parenting was associated with less of an increase in internalizing behavior problems over time, when controlling for BI (Williams et al., 2009). Closely related to perceptions of parenting style are parenting beliefs, such as beliefs about parenting or about the specific needs of certain children (Rubin et al., 2009). The link between maternal behavior and BI or anxiety may be developed through the mother’s beliefs about particular child behaviors (Rubin, Nelson, Hastings, & Asendorpf, 1999). For instance, when mothers interpret children’s wari- ness as highly distressing, they may feel overly concerned and attempt to control the situation to decrease their children’s discomfort. Therefore, children with BI may elicit protection from others and, ironically, this protective parenting behavior may maintain inhibited child behavior and lead to an anxiety disorder (Mills & Rubin, 1993; Rubin & Mills, 1990). Although this concern and involvement may seem adaptive, such beliefs and behaviors may pre- vent an inhibited child from independently experi- encing positive achievements and developing coping skills in novel situations. Conversely, research has shown that BI is negatively related to maternal endorsement of empathy, appropriate developmental expectations, and use of positive discipline strategies (Partridge, 2003), suggesting that some parents may not adopt such a concerned attitude towards their inhibited child. These diverse differences in parental beliefs may exert important influences on their subsequent parenting behavior and the develop- mental outcomes of their BI children. In addition, it is important to note which individual is reporting on parents’ behavior or style, as individual biases may influence their responses. For instance, children with heightened anxiety may perceive their parents as more rejecting or negative, due to their own vigi- lance to the surrounding environment. Similarly, parents with their own psychopathology may have low efficacy in their parenting skills, and as a result report more negative, controlling styles. More work is needed with multiple informants of parenting behaviors, psychopathology, and the overall parent– child relationship in order to tease apart these intervening factors from child BI and anxiety. Mother–child attachment and family relation- ships. Parents’ repeated interactions with their inhibited children influence the broader parent–child relationship and family climate. When parents react to their inhibited children by protecting and guarding them from their fears, and parenting in an overpro- tective or intrusive manner, the child’s fears are reinforced and even heightened. While it is plausible that maternal efforts to minimize their children’s fears may appear sensitive in nature and might lead to a secure attachment, parents’ constant effort to guard children from fearful situations might actually put a great deal of strain on the relationship, leading to an insecure attachment. In fact, research has shown that
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