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Parent-Child Relational Problem

What is the Parent-Child Relational Problem?

Do you have trouble with your parent or child, but do not know why? The Parent-Child Relational Problem serves to describe the difficulties created between a child and a parent often communication and challenging interactions. Such problem can occur at any time during the child’s development however, it is more likely to occur during adolescence.

It is important to note that the “parent” is whoever is considered as their primary caregiver.

It is important to note that such problem is not considered a mental disorder however, some behaviors that can be found or created because of the conflict can result and be associate with other psychiatric conditions. Such problem tends to rather be associated with impaired functioning in behavioral, cognitive, or affective domains. For example, there is an inadequate parental control, supervision or there is a lack of involvement with the child. Also, there may tend to be arguments that escalate to the point where there may be threats of physical violence as well as negative attributions of the other’s intentions may be involved. Furthermore, affective problems may include, but are not limited to feelings of sadness, or anger, for example, towards the other individual that may be part of the relationship.

What causes such problem?

To this day, there is not a concrete known cause yet. However, the following are risk factors that are thought to influence the relationships built between a parent and a child:

  • Family conflict
    • Lack of structure & discipline
  • Too much parental control
  • Marital conflict
    • Divorce or separation. However, the parents’ ability to cope with the change will affect the way the child copes the situation on his own
  • Maternal depression (i.e. postpartum depression)
    • If the mother experiences such depression, the child has a higher risk of development, emotional, and behavioral problems
  • Father involvement
    • Positive cognitive, developmental, and socio-behavioral child outcomes are associated with the visible and nurturing presence of the father
  • Poverty
  • Neglect or abandonment
  • Residential instability
  • A chronically ill or disabled child
  • An undiagnosed psychological or developmental problem (i.e. ADHD, autism)
  • Fragile emotional temperament in the child
  • Large families
  • Family stress (i.e. working parents, household chores, job dissatisfaction)
  • Peer pressures
  • Violence at home
  • Trauma (i.e. child abuse)
  • Parental illness, physical illness, alcohol, substance abuse or re-marriage/stepfamilies

What are the symptoms of such problem occurring?

  • Lack of communication
  • Yelling
  • Lack of respect for one another and constantly interrupting one another
  • Verbal aggression
  • Physical abuse

How can my relationship with my parent or child improve? How can it be managed?

  • Seek treatment such as psychological treatment, family therapy, engage in relaxation techniques
  • Receive parental education and training
  • Help yourself
  • Seek social support
  • Marriage guidance
  • Seek prevention program
    • May enhance co-parental relationship, parental mental health, parent-child relationship, and infant emotional and physiological regulation