Children are the foundation and building blocks on which the future structure of society is based upon. There are multiple factors which contributes to the positive and negative developments in children, among them aggression is the most important factor. Not only it hinders positive growth but in the development of their personality.

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In psychological terms, aggression is the behavior which is intended to hurt or harm another person. It can be expressed both physically and verbally.

In the case of children, parents portray this behavior in order to stop children from performing a certain act (e.g. playing in dirt, quarrel, unnecessary demands etc) or it may be intended  to pressurize them to learn even a certain positive behavior (e.g. to study, to eat or to  behave in a certain manner). It might work well but for a short duration but not in the long term growth  of their personality.

According to Bandura (1973), children learn aggressive behavior form others. Thus it concludes that a child who is positively reinforced for it is more likely to adopt this behavior. According to another theory, known as coercion theory (Patterson 2002), the development of aggression itself is largely explained by coercive family processes, in which parents and children mutually trains each other. Thus children of aggressive parents are more likely become aggressive in their adulthood.

Children whose parents prefer aggressive behavior to their children instead of rational or assertive behavior damages their healthy personality growth. They further treat their children in the same manner. They might become socially deviant individuals and they avoid listening to their elders who seem tyrant to them. Also they sometimes remember their past behavior to an injustice being done to them in their childhood. According to some other researchers it could be a cause of a poor school development, peer rejection, mental health concern, even addiction or alcoholism is young age or in worst case isolation from family members and society.

Thus, aggressive behavior to children in their childhood inhibits rational mental development in their personality and increases extremism in them. Instead of adopting the method of aggression, the parents should teach their children through logic,

love and politeness. It would increase the development of positive traits in their personality. It would eventually strengthen a society, family and even a whole nation. Such behaviors of parents help in the character building of both individual and populace. Love and caring behavior of parents will increase tolerance and harmony among children which has whole community and family in particular. Thus, the main reason behind this will be the cooperative approach of parents because they act as the primary and foremost institution for the moral and physical growth of children.

Maryam Shah
Psychologist
Willing Ways, Islamabad