Abstract of Parenting Goals
To emotional well-being and relationship quality of parenting goals. This research sought to determine the goals underpinning parental care and to examine how these relate to parents’ emotional well-being, relationships quality, and their responsiveness to their children’s needs. The link between parenting goals (Studies 1 through 3), and the outcomes was examined by surveying parents (Studies 4 and 5), as well as conducting an internal meta-analysis (N = 1,906). The Parenting Goals Scale (PGS) was created to capture four distinct goals that parents pursued in Studies 1 and 2.
The PGS measures four goals: child love and safety, child development and parent image. It also measures child acceptance. Each of the four goals were found to be significantly related to and distinct from other parenting styles, other-focused orientations or self-focused orientations. Each goal was uniquely associated with parents’ emotional well being, their relationship quality and their responsiveness to their children’s needs in a daily experience study (Study 4), as well as an internal meta analysis across all four studies.
A daily and persistent pursuit of child security and love goals was associated with greater emotional well-being and relationship quality. However, a daily and persistent pursuit of parent image goals was associated with lower emotional well-being, poorer relationship quality and less responsiveness, particularly at the chronic level. Children’s development goals were associated with lower emotional well-being, and poorer quality relationships, particularly at the chronic level. Finally, acceptance goals for children predicted positive emotions in daily living. After controlling for the parents’ child care difficulties and moods, these associations held largely. These findings are part of a growing body research that focuses on the joys and frustrations associated with parenting.
What Drives Parental Care?
Identifying unique parenting goals People strive to achieve many interpersonal goals–or goals pursued in their close relationships–focused on attaining desired outcomes for the self, their partners, and their relationships (Fitzsimons, Finkel, & vanDellen, 2015). There may be many different interpersonal goals that parents pursue. A father might cheer on his daughter at soccer practice with the aim of increasing her confidence or to calm his fears that his daughter’s performance would reflect poorly on him. Another scenario is when a mother gives her son advice about how to deal avec bullies at school. This may be to validate his feelings, or to help him to cope with the situation constructively and learn from it.
In close Relationships, Interpersonal Goals
Researchers believe that parents might also be motivated by other-oriented and self-centered goals for their children. These goals have been studied extensively in adult relationships but have been largely ignored in research on parenting (Dix 1992; Dix and Branca 2003). Research on parenting goals has largely focused on the child-rearing values of parents or the values they strive to instill in their kids (Dix & Branca 2003).