Parenting and its different aspects around the world

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The phenomenon of parenting is common to all cultures of world. Different aspects of parenting are considered universally important. For example, parents must nurture and should provide facilities regarding the healthy physical development as well as the basic survival needs of their children (Bornstein, 1995).

Furthermore, certain aspects of parental behavior like warmth and acceptance have been found to be linked with, and predictive of, childs normal psychological and behavioral adjustment across various cultures (Rohner, Khaleque, & Cournoyer, 2005)

Parenting as by definition is considered to be an important element of several aspects of children's outcome (Gadeyne, Ghesquiere, & Onghena, 2004). However, there are greater number of variations than commonalities in the expression and explanation of parenting behaviors across cultures. Such differences in parenting are mainly influenced by many factors including parental personality characteristics, child characteristics, and contextual or the environmental sources (Belsky, 1984).

Parenting Styles

Baumrind's (1971) has given the classification system that categorizes parenting styles according to two dimensions based on the parental influence.

The level of parental expectation from the child.

The level of parental responsiveness to the child.

These two dimensions of parenting, are frequently used in literature.and are termed as warmth, also called responsiveness or support, family cohesion versus conflict, distance or rejection; demandingness, also referred to as control versus permissiveness (e.g., Maccoby & Martin, 1983; Steinberg, 1990). Combinations of these two dimen-sions form the parenting styles that have been identified (Maccoby & Martin, 1983).

Parents with high expectations particularly and high responsiveness to their children are defined as authoritative parents(Pratt ,1999).While parents with high expectations but with no responsiveness are defined as authoritarian parents, third category include the parents who have low expectation level from their children and are not responsive are classified to be permissive parents .Last category include parents who are low in both dimensions(expectations and responsiveness) are considered neglectful or uninvolved (Pratt ,1999). This final category is generally considered to be an absence of parenting rather than an implemented "parenting style" and was not considered in the present study on parenting styles.

Contemporary research on parenting styles derives from Baumrind's (1978) well-known studies of children and their families. Baumrind's concepts of parenting style are based on a typological approach to the study of family socialization practices. (Darling & Steinberg, 1993).This approach focuses on the configuration of different parenting practices and assumes that the impact of any one practice depends, in part, on the arrangement of all other domains. (Darling & Steinberg, 1993). Variations in the application of major parenting elements (such as warmth, involvement, maturity demands, and supervision) produce variations in child responsiveness to parental influence. (Darling & Steinberg, 1993). As from this perspective, parenting style is viewed as basic characteristic of the parents that alters the effectiveness of family socialization practices and the child's understanding of such practices (Darling & Steinberg, 1993). Baumrind's (1971) parenting style typology identified three qualitatively different patterns of parental authority-authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive.

Dimensions of Parenting.

Authoritative Parenting

Authoritative parents exercise both high level of demandingness as well as responsiveness. (Baumrind 1971;1989). They control their child's behavior according to their age appropriate manner and create an affectionate and loving environment where the child could express his or her opinion and participate in decision making processes within family.(Baumrind 1971;1989).

Authoritative parents maintain an equilibrium between the levels of demandingness as well as responsiveness. These parents make and firmly enforce rules and standards for their children's behavior. (Baumrind, 1991; Dornbusch, Ritter, Leiderman, Roberts, & Fraleigh, 1987). They consistently monitor conduct and use non punitive methods of discipline when rules are violated. And in return they expect socially responsible and mature behavior by children and when such behaviors are met they reinforce them. (Baumrind, 1991; Dornbusch, Ritter, Leiderman, Roberts, & Fraleigh, 1987).

Steiburgh, Lamborn, DornBusch & Darling study examines the effect of authoritative parenting, parental involvement in schooling, and parental praise to do well in terms of school achievement.The sample was based on ethnicity as well as the social class and was heterogeneous.It approximately consisted of 6,400 American 14-18-year-olds. Results indicated that Authoritative parenting leads to better school performance and stronger school engagement in adolescents. The positive impact of authoritative parenting on adolescent achievement, however, is mediated by the positive effect of authoritativeness on parental involvement in child schooling.

Thus authoritative parenting style is recognized as the best and most suitable style for developing competent and confident children in all domains of life (Berk, 2002, Bems, 2004).

Authoritarian Parenting

Authoritarian parents are characterized by high levels of demandingness and low level of responsiveness. (Baumrid,1971;1989). They have strick control over the children ,expecting conformity and obedience and allow little space for child independence as well as autonomy.(Baumrid,1971;1989). These parents attempt to control the behavior and attitudes and emotions of their children according to a set of standards which they have made. (Baumrind, 1991).They tend to emphasize obedience, respect for authority, and order. They also discourage verbal discussions with their children, expecting their rules to be followed without further justification (Baumrind, 1991).

Researches on authoritarian parenting found that high parental control was associated with heightened selfconsciousness among young teenagrs. Increased self-awareness and in turn, predicted lower ability in math, social, and sports and games domains (Yee & Flanagan, 1985).

Brand, Hatzinger ,Beck &Trachsler(1995) study found that authoritarian parenting style was highly correlated with low sleep quality, negative mood, increased daytime sleepiness, and with increased symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Barnes and Farrell(1981) found that parents who used forceful control over their children such as yelling, screaming, shouting, slapping, and hitting had adolescents who were more likely to exhibit destructive behavior at school.

Permissive Parenting

Permissive parents exert low demandingness levels towards their children.They exercise minimal control and authority as well as failed to define limits of acceptable behavior of the child.(Baumrind1971;1989).

The main idea of permissive parenting is to allow the child extensive autonomyand independence, supported by high parental support, in the hopes of establishing close relationships with their children (Peterson & Hann, 1999).

Children who have been raised by such parents are found to be at risk for delinquent and destructive behaviors, poor educational competence as well as low levels of psychological functioning.(Baumrind1971;1989).Permissive parenting style often inculcate more serious problems in adolescence such as drug use (Baumrind, 1991; Maccoby & Martin, 1983), and school misconduct with other fellows and teachers (McCord, 1988).

However, on the other hand positive outcomes of permissive parenting include close parent-child relationships, greater self-esteem, and more independence (Herz & Gullone, 1999).

Neglectful Parenting

The neglectful parents are the ones who are both low on responsiveness level as well as on demandingness (Maccoby and Martin,1997). Researches have shown that children and adolescents having neglectful parents show the poorest level of adjustment among the four types of parenting styles. Furthermore, these adolescents are the most deprived in terms of social competence, academic achievement, and psychological wellbeing. (Baumrind,&Lamborn,1991). Moreover, the harmful effects of neglectful parenting accumulate and increase over time (Steinberg , 1994).

Rai.(2008) study examined the role of Perceived Parental Rearing Style on drug addiction amongst Mizo male and female adolescents. The results indicated that neglectful parenting styles of father and mother leads to drug addiction among Mizo adolescents.

Parenting Styles and Children/Adolescents

Kramer & Cook (1997) reported that parental rearing style has its significant effect on the personality traits and risk behaviour of developing child. Parenting styles are likely to influence parents' success in transmitting the values they want to their children (Darling & Steinberg, 1993).

Smetana& Judith(2005) study found that adolescents viewed their parents as more permissive and more authoritarian than parents viewed themselves, whereas parents viewed themselves as more authoritative than did adolescents. Parents' parenting styles differentiated their conceptions of parental authority, but adolescents' perceptions did not.

Although the parenting style typology was originally developed for research on family socialization practices during childhood, it also has been used to study the links between family interaction patterns and areas of adolescent functioning. (Chao, 1994; Darling & Steinberg, 1993; Dornbusch ,1987).

Despite years of research on parenting styles, there are surprisingly few studies of the mechanisms that intervene between parenting and adolescents' achievement outcomes. Attempts to explain the influence of parenting style have generally focused on specific parental behaviors and on internal characteristics of youth. (Glasscow,1991).

Heaven,&Ciarocchi(2008)conducted a study to assess the long-term effects of adolescents' recollections of parental styles on the development of their optimistic thinking, by finding their levels of self-esteem and trait hope. Participants include in the study were 884 high school students. Results indicated that Perceived parental authoritativeness was related to high hope, where as perceived parental authoritarianism was related to low self-esteem among adolescents.

Wagner, Cohen, and Brook (1996) emphasized that adolescents with perceived warm parenting style were less likely to suffer from symptoms of depression after stressful life events than adolescents who reported more rejecting and reproaching parenting styles.

Kaisa, Hakan and Jarierik (2000) study found that adolescents from authoritative families practiced adaptive achievement strategies which were characterized by low levels of failure expectations, task-irrelevant behaviour, passivity and self-enhancing attributions. Adolescents from neglectful families, in turn, applied maladaptive strategies characterized by high levels of task-irrelevant behaviours, passivity and a lack of self-enhancing attributions. Findings revealed that parenting styles influenced adolescents' academic achievement.

Parenting Styles and Culture

Several studies also indicated that parenting styles differ according to cultures. Kim(2008) study indicated that cultural values moderated the relations among parental dimensions of warmth and control. For example, fathers with high association with Asian cultural values related the expressions of behavioral control with those of warmth.Fathers with low conformity level to Asian cultural values, however, associated expressions of behavioral control with both warmth and aggression/hostility. Overall, differences in reports of parenting styles as well as differences in the relations among cultural values and parenting styles revealed the highly complex levels based on different forms and functions of parenting styles among Koreans.

Franco(1998) study examines cultural differences in parenting practices between Mexican American and Caucasian college students. In this study Mexican American and Caucasian college students were asked about their perceived parenting styles. Initially it was assumed that Mexican American parenting discipline practices would involve a higher level of punishment as opposed to Caucasian parenting disciplinary practices. Secondly it was also assumed that most of the Mexican- American parents would fall under the Authoritarian parenting style. The results indicated the existence of a correlation between culture and parenting practices. Where as the study did not find significant differences of parenting attitudes between Caucasian and Mexican Americans college students.

Differences between mothers and fathers in Parenting adolescents

Researches have indicated that limited information exists about fathers' parenting styles and possible gender differences in parenting style, there is some possibility and evidence that mothers tend to demonstrate parenting practices that are related with an authoritative style, while fathers exhibit practices more consistent with an authoritarian style, particularly with regard to the usage of disciplinary strategies regarding adolescents (Tein, Roosa, & Michaels, 1994).

Kim(2008) study examine differences and relations among Korean mothers', fathers', and adolescent girls' and boys' reports of parenting styles, distinguishing possible differences in early and mid-adolescence. Results revealed that, mothers were more warm, aggressive/hostile, behaviorally controlling, and psychologically controlling than fathers. Boys also reported more parental behavioral control and as compared with girls. Developmental comparisons showed that younger adolescents and their parents reported the use of more controlled parenting styles than older adolescents and their parents.

Simons & Conger(2005) study focused on the ways in which mothers and fathers differ with regard to four parenting styles. The study examined the way in which individual parenting styles combine to form family parenting styles and the extent to which these various styles are related to negativity like delinquency, depression, and school commitment for adolescents. Results indicated that the most common family parenting styles are those in which both parents depicted or used the same style of parenting. Having both authoritative parents was associated with the positive outcomes for adolescents. In the absence of this ideal family parenting style, there is evidence that having one authoritative parent can, in most cases, protects a child from the harmful consequences associated with less optimal styles of parenting.

Conrade &Robert (2006) examined significant gender-based differences for the authoritative and permissive styles of parenting. Mothers, rather than fathers, were perceived to be more likely to use these patterens of parenting styles. When considering the level to which parents differentiated between their sons and daughters, significant differences were found for each of the three parenting styles. Fathers as perceived by male respondents were more likely to use an authoritarian and permissive style. Mothers were perceived to be more likely to use an authoritative style by female respondents .


Shyness is a long lasting social phenomenon(Crozier,2002).Shyness could be understood and defined in a number of ways, mostly in terms of different categories. One such category views shyness as a subjective and private experience which is exhibited as anxiety and apprehension in interpersonal situations. (Buss, 1980).

Buss (1980), defined shyness as an inhibition of expected social behaviour, together with feelings of tension apprehension and awkwardness. Several researchers who have been investigating shyness have attempted to develop objective definitions of such human experience. Another definition sates that shyness is the discomfort, inhibition, and awkwardness in social situations, particularly in situations where there is possible interactions with unfamiliar people (Buss, 1985) or as a tendency to avoid social interaction and to fail to behave appropriately in social situations (DurmuÅŸ, 2007).

.Carducci(2000) further described shyness as an interpersonal dielema that effects individuals who display certain characteristics like self consciousness as well as feelings of rejection and low self esteem.

Researchers have defined shyness for some individuals that shyness may be characterized by conformity to others' ideas, described as ''going along in order to get along'' (Cheek & Krasnoperova, 1999; Leary & Kowalski, 1995; Lewinsky, 1941).

One of the most comprehensive definition indicate shyness as a form of excessive self-focus, or preoccupation with one's thoughts, feelings and physical reactions. (Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998). Shyness may vary from mild social anxiety to totally inhibiting social phobia. It may be chronic and devestatingl, serving as a personality trait that is central in one's self-concept. (Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998).

The possible reactions for shyness can occur at four of the following levels: cognitive, affective, physiological and behavioural.(Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998).

Somatic Component

The somatic component involves having physiological and affective-emotional symptoms such as blushing, trembling, feeling upset, and so forth (Cheek & Krasnoperova, 1999; Cheek & Watson, 1989).

Behavioral Component

The behavioral component includes quietness, awkward conversations, nonverbal behavior such as gaze aversion, withdrawing from social contacts, and avoiding social interactions (Cheek & Krasnoperova, 1999; Cheek & Watson, 1989).

Cognitive Component

The cognitive component involves thoughts and worries, such as fearing rejection or being self-conscious (Cheek & Krasnoperova, 1999; Cheek & Watson, 1989).

Like many other types of emotions, shyness is acquired in social relationships, and experienced mostly when a person is in connection with other people.(Asendorpf, 1990) .

Irvirig &Irving(1995) study examined relationship between shyness and anxiety among high school children .In this study, a personality scale was used to measure shyness and an anxiety scale was administered to children from grades 1 to 5 New Brunswick elementary school. Results indicated a significant correlation between shyness and anxiety for the overall sample. When these data were analyzed according to the grade level of children, large and significant correlations between shyness and anxiety were found primarily for children standing at the upper level of grades.

Different approaches to Shyness

Genetics and Shyness

There exist evidence that infants are genetically predisposed to shyness(Spanish & Angleiter,1998).The inhibited or shy child is usually born during a period in the year when body produces melatonin, which is actually neutrally active hormone that may be transmitted to fetus(Henderson & Zimbardo,1998).

The active hormone is than passed from placenta to the brain od the new fetus ,where reaction take place with the cells which produce the anxious disposition which is displayed by shy children(Carducci &Zimbardo,1995).

There are several other causes like blue eyes, fair skin, blond hairs as well as allergic reactions, which are common in hay fever, which has been identified commonly in the relatives as well as the shy individual's.(Henderson &Zimbardo,1998).

Trait Shyness By Crozier

Crozier(2002) has given the trait concept of shyness as a particular form of social anxiety,which may include stage fright, embarrassment and social phobia.Shy indiviuals would rather keep quiet than facing the possibility of rejection by others.(Jackson,Towson &Nardussi,1997).

Gender and shyness

Carducci & Zimbardo(1995) identified that gender play an important role regarding shyness .Girls are more likely to be shy from childhood to adolescence ,due to more parental protection as compared to boys. Whereas shyness is more distressing to boys due to gender role stereotypes that boys have to be more social.(Crozier,2001).

Gokhan (2010) study found the relationship of shyness and loneliness levels of elementary students. The sample with in the research constituted of 470 elementary students. Revised Cheek and Buss Shyness Scale and Loneliness Scale were used in the study in order to collect data from the students Results indicated that the shyness levels of male students were found to be higher than the female students.

There is also accumulating evidence to suggest that shyness is more of a risk factor for boys than for girls. (Yarrow, Richters, &Wilson, 1988).As shyness in girls is more likely to be rewarded and accepted by parents, and result in more positive interactions, whereas shyness in boys is more likely to be discouraged and lead to more negative interactions (Yarrow, Richters, &Wilson, 1988). These maladaptive outcomes, include behavior problems, loneliness, and peer exclusion (Morison & Masten, 1991).

Stevenson Hinde & Glovers(1996) study found that the mothers of the shy boys responded differently than did the mothers of the shy girls. This suggest that shyness may also be influenced by parents social expectations as regard to gender.It could be said that shyness may be tolerable for girls,as due to gender role expectations which demand them to be passive as well as humble.In case of boys these expectations required them to be dominant and bold.

Spooner,Evans &Santos(2005) assessed shyness in grade 5 and 6 students. They found differences regarding self-ratings of shyness among girls and boys.Girls reported more being shy than boys. These findings suggest the real difference in the subjective feelings of shy individuals.

Types of Shyness

Fearful and self-conscious shyness

Fearful shyness develops in the early years of life and involves an important genetic factor that is sensitivity to emotional reactivity. (Henderson, 2002). This reactivity actually develops negative social conditioning, as well as fear in the presence of others.(Henderson,2002) On the other hand self-conscious shyness is found in the people who actually perceive themselves as social entities who feel discomfort in the situations where their self is being evaluated openly.(Henderson,2002).This type of shyness is linked with the parental negative marks during the childhood.(Henderson,2002).

Schmidt and Robinson(1992) found that individuals who are fearful shy have reported lower self-esteem than the individuals with self-conscious shyness. This is due to the fact that fear of being negatively evaluated is long lasting and is in more severity for fearful shy individuals than self-conscious shy individuals

.Due to this, fearful shy individuals inhibit behaviors related to enhancing their self-efficacy which is important for the development of self-esteem in them. (Schmidt & Robinson,1992).

Situational Shyness

Situational shyness involves experiencing the symptoms of shyness in specific social performance situations but not incorporating it into one's self-concept. (Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998).

Private self conscious shyness

Private self-consciousness refers to the general ability to focus attention on private, internal experiences, like desires, emotional states, and personal thoughts. (Anderson, Bohon, & Berrigan, 1996).

Apart from anxiety and depression, private self-consciousness has been clearly related to adaptive and personality traits being psychologically healthy as well as cognitive styles. For example it has been viewed that persons who score high on private self-consciousness report themselves to be thoughtful (Turner, 1978). However individuals who report high levels of private self-consciousness tend to be more stable in their reports regarding personality measures, which is considered to reflect intimate knowledge about the self, than individuals reporting lower levels of private self-consciousness (Siegrist, 1996).

Public self conscious shyness

Public self-consciousness is related to feelings of anxiety in social situations (Fenigstein et al., 1975), rejection-sensitivity (Fenigstein, 1979), the personality trait of neuroticism (Scandell, 1998), worrying (Keogh, French, & Reidy, 1998), and reports of paranoid cognition (e.g., feelings of being watched; Fenigstein & Vanable, 1992). Public self-consciousness has also been related to the basic concers regarding self-presentation..

For example, positive associations have been found between public self-consciousness and women's makeup use and their beliefs about the positive impact of makeup in social situations (Miller & Cox, 1982); In another study positive associations have been reported with women's concerns regarding clothing as well as fashion (Solomon & Schopler, 1982). Moreover, public self-consciousness has been related to conformity to the opinions of others (Scheier, 1980).

Individuals scoring high on public self-consciousness change or alter their opinions as well as their personal beliefs more often than those low on public self-consciousness (Scheier, 1980). Concerns regarding self presentation may influence the public self-conscious person to change his or her opinion so that he/she could be "in-line" with others, or to stop the self from standing out and being perceived as different and unusual than others. (Scheier, 1980) At last, public self-consciousness has been linked to self-as-target bias, or the tendency to associate and evaluate the self as the target in situations in which the identity of the self is unclear. By using the group experimental designs and by inducement of self-as-target bias, Fenigstein (1984) examined that regardless of the usual occurence of an event (positive versus negative, enjoyable versus unenjoyable), all college-age students were more likely to perceive themselves than others as being the target or of an event.More importantly, the self-as-target bias was positively associated with public self-consciousness, but not clearly with private selfconsciousness. These results indicated that as a result of their higher preoccupation with themselves as by considering themselves as social objects, high publicly self-conscious individuals perceive that others are always interested in them (Fenigstein, 1984). However, Fenigstein and colleagues argued that results from the other studies support the notion that within the domain of interpersonal contexts, public self-consciousness increases the likelihood of attributions regarding the self as the focus of attention (Fenigstein, 1984).

Prevalance of Shyness

The percentage of adults in the US reporting that they are chronically shy, such that it presents a problem in their lives, had been reported at 40% since the early 1970's. Latest research clearly state that the percentage of self-reported shyness has risen gradually in the last ten years to almost 50% . The National Comorbidity Survey in 1994 revealed a lifetime prevalence of social phobia of 13.3%, making it the third most prevalent psychiatric disorder. Furthermore the comparison of the other studies suggests that the proportion of the population who are actually suffering from chronic, shyness may not be reflected in the numbers of people visiting anxiety disorders clinics. On of the recent estimate in Mysore and surrounding areas of south India was that 26.2% of the total children showed high levels of shyness, who were followed by 36.6% having moderate shyness and other 37.3% of the children showed low levels of shyness (Natesha & D'Souza, 2007).

Shyness and Children/Adolescents

Shy children who get exposed to novel social conditions are often more "difficult" and more easily aroused as compared to non-shy children (Kagan, Reznick, & Snidman, 1987). Shy children are cautious and anxious when they meet new people and perceive themselves as being socially evaluated by them (Rubin, Coplan, & Bowker, 2009).

From transition through childhood to adolescence, extremely shy children are at risk for number of socio-emotional problems (Rubin et al., 2009; Sanson, Smart, & Misson, 2011). For example, shy children report feeling loneliness and display signs of anxiety and other internalizing problems (Coplan , 2008; Coplan, Closson, & Arbeau, 2007). Where as, peers tend to respond to shy behaviors with negative behaviors such as rejection, and victimization.(Chen, & Wang, 2006).

Asendorpf (1993) hypothesized that children temperamentally disposed to inhibited behavior are not the ones who lack social skills in settings with familiar peers if they feel accepted by them; he also hypothesized that the quality of children's relationships with classmates increasingly predict their social inhibition.

Positive Aspects of Shyness

Researchers have argued that shyness could also have some positive features,(Carducci, 1999). However, situational shyness might serve as means to keep us vigilent, and to make us think twice before acting in social interactions (Carducci, 1999). This, in turn, might prevent us from upsetting ourselves or hurting the feelings of other people(Carducci, 1999).

In addition, some theorists view shyness as a desirable trait (Carducci, 1999; Zimbardo, 1977). They argued that most of the features of shyness could be viewed as valuable (Gough & Thorne, 1986; Leary & Buckley, 2000; Schmidt & Tasker, 2000; Zimbardo, 1977). Shy people are often perceived as modest, self-controlled, and cautious (Leary, Bednarski, Hammon, & Duncan, 1997). Such people are perceived to be non-impulsive. (Schmidt & Tasker, 2000). If shy individuals' self-descriptions of shyness are more inclined towards patience, self-control, or balance, then others view their shyness in a positive way. (Gough & Thorne, 1986).

Negative consequences of Shyness

Shyness has been linked to indices of maladaptive behaviors, particularly along the internalizing domains.( Coplan & Armer, 2005). In the preschoolers, shyness is related to anxiety during free play with peers, emotional problems and other internalizing problems. (Phillipsen, Bridges, McLemore, & Saponaro, 1999). Shy children display lower social competence and self-esteem, more academic difficulties, and tend to be rejected more by their peers. (Bohlin, Haegkull, & Andersson, 2005)

Furthermore in adolescence, shyness becomes increasingly associated with the problems like loneliness, depressive symptoms, inhibition, lower self-worth as well as less coping strategies. (Crozier, 1995).

Murberg (2009) study examines the relation between shyness, social support and depressive symptoms in a large sample of 259 students with age range of 14 to 16 years in two secondary schools. Results showed positive associations of depressive symptoms with shyness .In addition, interactive effect of shyness and peer support were associated with depressive symptoms in students.

There are some serious and dire consequences of shyness .(Carducci & Zimbardo,1995)Individuals with shyness do not participate in social activities ,and are verbally and non-verbally less communicative.(Henderson & Zimbardo,1998).

Shy individuals have cognitive problems, such as they are unable to have lucid thoughts in front of other people. (Carducci & Zimbardo,1995). They usually freeze up while talking .They seem to be arrogant with others where as in actual they are anxious and fearful.(Carducci & Zimbardo,1995).

Shyness also results in health related problems because they lack a proper social support, which is important regarding health and they don't reveal the problems which are of important nature for medical practitioners as well as psychologists.(Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998). If shyness remains persistent it could result in problems like psychological syndromes as well as decrease in life expectancy.(Henderson & Zimbardo, 1998).

Parenting styles and Shyness

Coplan (2008) reported that relations between shyness and internalizing problems were significantly stronger among children with mothers characterized an overprotective parenting style.

Shyness and inhibition in small children is effect parenting beliefs and behaviors that, in turn, reinforce the development of socially withdrawn behaviors in children ( Mills & Rubin, 1993).

In a study finding the relationship of parenting styles and shyness.The fearfulness related to social situations and extreme inhibition in children was related to overcontrolling and overprotective parenting.Such attitudes and behaviors would rather reinforce social anxiety and shyness in the child.(Rubin, Stewart, & Chen, 1995).

Ozden & Demir(2005) examined the relationship between three perceived parental attitudes and shyness. Results indicated that parental warmth predicted self-esteem; perceived parental authoritarianism predicted shyness; and perceived parental autonomy predicted self-esteem. Self-esteem partially mediated the relationship between parental authoritativeness and shyness, whereas it fully mediated the relationship between parental psychological autonomy and shyness. Fear of negative evaluation fully mediated the relationship between parental authoritarianism and shyness. In addition, the relationship between self-esteem and shyness was partially mediated by fear of negative evaluation.

Positive parental involvement is one way through which positive psychosocial outcomes may be encouraged in shy children over the adolescent transition. Reiss and colleagues (2000) found fathers' warmth and support resulted in increased level of adolescent sociability, and which was further associated with competent, prosocial behavior and positive peer interactions .

Several studies have found a significant positive relationship between positive parental involvement and social acceptance during the adolescent transition but a clear need remains for researchers to examine that how positive parental involvement help shy children making the transition possible to adolescence. (Dekovic & Meeus, 1997; Roberts ,2000).

Gender Differences, Shyness, and Parenting

The ever long term effects of shyness or socially withdrawn behavior have clearly differential outcomes for boys and girls. In this context, it has been defended that boys' shyness may have greater psychological disfunctioning as compaired with girls (Caspi, Elder, & Bem, 1988).

Regarding the quality of the parent-child relationship, it has been associated with the shy behavior for boys but not for girls. Insecure attachment in boys,is more likely to be linked with passivity and shy behaviors in their early as well as mid-childhood (Renken ,1989).

Stevenson-Hinde (1989); Engfer (1993) reported in their study which was based on the relationship of parenting styles with gender, that the parents of socially withdrawn and shy girls were very warm, supportive as well as sensitive. Another study based on gender differences found that a increased level of positive mother-child interactions has been related to moderately shy girls in comparison with moderately shy boys (Stevenson-Hinde & Glover, 1996).

Stevenson-Hinde and Glover (1996) found in their study that mothers interaction with shy boys was more positive than extremely shy girls. Hence any gender differences obtained may seemed to be dependent on the level of shyness or social anxiety among girls and boys. Whether the authors' index of "positive interaction".Results also indicated that inappropriate warmth from parents is associated with less social interaction as well as inhibited behaviors.(Rubin,1997).

MacDonald and Parke (1984) found that the parents of shy children were less affectionate specially fathers. As during interactions between father and sons, it was found that boys who were socially withdrawn and shy had fathers who were highly directive and intrusive.The same findings were less significant for socially withdrawn daughters.

The rationale behind conducting this research was to identify whether their exist relationship between parenting styles and shyness and to identify whether this relationship differ on the basis of gender among school students.The second reason was to see that which parenting style specifically predicts shyness. It is assumed that adolescents with the high score on perceived authoritarian parenting style might show high level of shyness. Furthermore it is assumed that adolescents scoring high on authoritative parenting style will have low level of shyness. Positive parental involvement is one way through which positive psychosocial outcomes may be encouraged in shy children over the adolescent transition.


The objectives of the study are:

To find out the relationship between parenting styles and shyness among adolescents.

To explore the predictive value of parenting styles for shyness.

To explore the gender differences between parenting styles and shyness among adolescents.

To explore that which parenting style serves as risk factor and as protective factor for shyness among adolescents.


H:There exists a positive relationship between perceived authoritarian parenting style and shyness among adolescents.

H:Authoritarian parenting style predicts shyness in adolescents.

H:There exists a negative relationship between perceived authoritative parenting style and shyness among adolescents.

Operational Definitions:


Students from middle class families' age range 12-16 years.

Parenting style:

Parenting styles was measured by Parental authority questionnaire developed by Buri. In Pakistan Parental Authority Questionnaire was translated by Shameem. It consists of three subscales of authoritarian, authoritative and permissive parenting styles.The high score indicates the particular parenting style for father and mother.(Buri,1997)


Shyness is defined as tendency to avoid social interactions and to fail to participate appropriately in social situations" (Pilkonis ,1977,p.596)

Shyness was measured by shyness questionairee .It was developed by Crozier.In Pakistan shyness questionairre was translated by Yasmeen in Urdu. The high score indicate the shyness.


Sample was selected by using convenient sampling. It comprised of100 students from government schools including both male(50) and females (50)respondents from Rawalpindi. The age range of school children is 12-16 years old.

Demographic variables

Demographic variables include age, sex, education, Parental education, Parental profession, Socio economic status.


In the present study two scales are used. One is Parental authority questionnaire and other one is Shyness questionnaire.

Parental Authority Questionnaire

For measuring the perceived parenting styles Parental authority questionnaire was used.It was originally developed by Buri(1991).In the research its translated adaptive version by Babree(1997) was uesd.It is 5 point likert type scale Ranging from completely true(5) completely wrong(1). It consists of 30 total questions and 10 questions for each parenting styles for both fathers and mothers.The scale measure the magnitude and manner in which authority is exercised.It has three subscales that are authoritative parenting, authoritarian parenting and permissive parenting which are actually based on Baumrids parenting types. It consists of two forms.Form 1 measuring the perceived parenting styles for father and form 2 measuring perceived parenting styles for mother which are filled by the children. Scoring include Strongly agree=5,Somewhat agree=4, don't know=3,somewhat disagree=2, Strongly disagree=1. According to Babree alpha coefficient of subscales of PAQ for fathers range from 0.76-0.80 and mothers ranges from 0.80-0.82.

Shyness Questionnaire:

It was developed by Crozier (1995). It consists of 26 items and requires the subject to indicate his/her response by ticking "YES" 'NO" OR 'DON'T KNOW". The items of the questionnaire are based on situations or interactions like performing in front of the class, being made fun of, being told off, having one's photograph taken, and novel situations involving teachers, school-friends interaction and soon. The negative items are 9, 10, 15, 16 and 23. In the research translated adaptive version by Yasmeen (2005) has been used.This adaptive version included 28 questions. It consist of two forms one for boys and other for girls both having the same questions. Scoringinclude Yes=2, No=1and Don't Know=0.Possible score range is 56.Cutt of score is 28.


Researcher used a personal reference as well as university reference letter for the study. Before starting data collection the principals of the schools were asked to sign the informed consent form. The researcher approached the sample from different government schools from Rawalpindi. The Parental authority questionnaire and Shyness questionnaire were used to assess parenting styles and shyness . The participants were briefed by the objectives, the outcomes of the study and procedure of attempting the questionnaire. They were requested not to leave any item unfilled.