Authoritarian Parenting Style And The Relationship With Children’s Drinking Habit

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“Getting angry is so easy, everybody is bound to become angry, but becoming angry at the correct person, to the correct degree, in the correct time, for correct reason in correct ways, is not easy”. (Goleman, 1995). This statement by Aristotle perhaps highlighted that conflicts are bound to arise among individuals, however great effort are bound to arise among individuals, however great effort is required in ensuring that when conflict arises it is dealt with accordingly with competence hence the need for parenting styles and attitude on student drinking. For generations past people have been: made to believe that parenting style will predict and determine how successful such an individual is in life. However, research finding will later disprove such believe with every emerging evidences show casing the importance of other type of parenting style. The further investigation of parenting style and related parameters.

Parenting style is defined as a child’s perception of his or her parent or care takers behaviour. Two important aspects of parenting styles are; the amount of affection and kindness that children experiences; and the amount of acceptance and control that is applied by parents (Baumrind, 1991). Within this dimension Baumrind presenting three behaviour pattern for parents and the fourth was suggested by Macoby & Martin, (1983) The four (4) are namely: Authoritative, Authoritarian, Permissive and Uninvolved Parenting. Children of Authoritative Parents show high self confidence and higher self- reliance. They have higher inclination towards personal independence and they can make decisions personally (Steinberg, 2001). Parents of this group of children believe that wrong behaviour of children are necessary for their mental maturity and confronting with the difficulties of adulthood period (Bahrami,  2009). Children of the Authoritarian parents seems worried, isolated, and dissatisfied, and have problems in coping with peers. Also in these children, pervasive hostility, anger and much disobedient to boys and girls abstaining of duties in girls is observed (Baumrind, 1991). These children are so much expecting and their training pattern is based on reproach. Severely, and lack of affection and kindness, since their parent expect the children to obey their commands indisputably. Thus, dialogue takes place less often between the children and their parents. If children of authoritarian parents do not obey their parents, they will experience punishment. (Leung & Kwan, 1998). Children of permissive parents avoid taking responsibilities and because their parent exercise affectionate behavior, these children do not learn patience and tolerance against hardships and adversities (Aunola, Stattin & Nurmi 2000). The Uninvolved style is a pattern of uninvolvement and little monitoring by parent with a child, uninvolved parents are of little emotion involvement with their children, but are responsive and demanding.


Though parenting, as a perception of parents of their own attitude towards attitude on student drinking to be a great disadvantage on the dynamics of behaviour for socio-psychological researches, how child perceives and should be deemed most important as he is the one whose process of socialization stands for furtherance (Bharadwaj, 1996). Individual experiences not only help in making the sense of Self-identity and self-ideal but may also lead him to percieve, think and act in a self-directed manner. So, it appears that child’s perception of parental attitude towards himself should be of great concern in the dynamics of behaviour.

Different parenting styles are being practice by different parents around the world and these different parental practices are considered to have strong effect on their children’s outcome. Racial differences in parenting practices have been a topic of considerable debate and controversy. Some researchers have found cultural differences between African-American and Caucasians parenting behaviors, specifically an increased use of corporal punishment within African-American Families (Graham, 1992).

Paul, (2006) Report that, African-American feel more pressure to have their children under control because of the prejudicial nature of American society. MeLoyd, Takeuchi, & Wilson (2000), have observed that how one ethnic group evaluates another groups parenting behaviors. They reported that parenting behaviours deemed typical by African-Americans were considered strict by Caucasian American parents.

Chan & Koo (2010) in their research believed that Chineses parents frequently used impulse control, conducted physical punishment, and discouraged children from being independent, active or exploratory. From these characteristics, the Chinese parenting style could be categorized as authoritarian parenting. They also believe that in the United States, it is observed that most of the parents practice the permissive style as opposed to that of Africa, which is more of the authoritative style. In Nigeria Y Wee (2012) observed that the most used style is also the authoritative and the authoritarian but with the century we are in many Parents have started practicing the permissive style too.

In addition, it was observed that, most of the studies done on parenting style and emotional intelligence have been directed towards American families and othe apart of the outside countries, but not in Nigeria, this can be said to be because of differences in the environment and also differences in our culture. Since culture has been found to affect people’s way of life, the question here is, would the parenting practices here in Nigeria also have a similar or a different effect on student drinking.


The following research question have been put forward in this study:

1.     Does authoritarian parenting style have a relationship with children’s drinking habit?

2.     Does authoritative parenting style correlate with children’s drinking?

3.     Does permissive parenting style have an association with children’s drinking habit?


Parenting Styles

Parenting is the style of children upbringing refers to a privilege of responsibility of mother and father, together or independently to prepare the child for society and culture, which provides ample opportunity to a child to find roots, continuity and a sense of belonging (Sirohi & Chauhan, 1991) and also serves as an effective agent of socialization. Parenting style is also defined as a child’s perception of his or her care givers’ behaviour in two dimensions, parental responsiveness and parental demands. Within these dimensions, four parenting style have been suggested, three of these by Baumrind (1967); the authoritarian style, the permissive style the authoritative style, and the uninvolved style suggested by Macoby & Martin, (1983). The three styles proposed by Baumrind would be used in this study to assume the levels of parenting styles.

The Authoritarian Styles

Authoritarian parenting style is a pattern of power assertive behaviour of the parents. They are highly demanding and directive but not responsive. In this style of parenting, children are expected to follow strict rules established by the parents. Failure to follow such rules usually result in punishment. Authoritative parents fail to explain the reasons behind these rules. If asked to explain, the parents might simply reply “because I said so”. These parents have high demands, but are not responsive to their children. According to Baumrind, these parents are “obedient-and-status-oriented, and expect their orders to be obeyed without explanation”. The effects of this type of parenting style is that, the children of such parents tends to associate obedience and success with love, some of them display more aggressive and success wiht love, some of them display more aggressive behaiviour outside their home, others may act fearful or overly shy around others, they often have lower self-esteem, and also have difficulty in social situation.

The Permissvie style

Permissive parenting style is pattern of warmth and acceptance, but lack adequate controlling of child’s behaviour. Permissive parents are more likely to show responsiveness then demandingness, they are often called non-directive parents. This type of parenting style is also known as indulgent parenting. Upon their children because these parents have low expectation for self-control and maturiyt, they rarely discipline their children. According to Baumrind, permissive parents are more responsive than demanding, they are non-traditional and lenient, they do not require mature behavior, they allow considerable self-regulation, and avoid confrontation. In a study, permissive parenting was linked to underage alcohol use; teens with permissive parents were three times more likely to engage in heavy drinking. Research also suggests that permissive parenting is also linked to other risky behaviours such as drug use and other forms misconduct. Because permissive parenting involves a lack of demand and expectations, children raised by parents with this style tend to group up without a strong sense of self-discipline. They may be more unruly in school due to lack of boundaries in the home, and may be less academically motivated than many of their peers. Since these parents have few requirements for mature behaviour, children may lack skills in social settings. While they may be good at interpersonal communication, they lack other important skills such as sharing.

The Authoritative style

Authoritative parenting style is a pattern of nurturance and reasoning of the parents. This style is sometimes referred to as “democratic” and involves a child-centric approach in which parents hold high expectations for their children. People with authoritative parenting styles want their children to utilize reasoning and work independently, but they also have high expectations for their children. When children break the rules, they are disciplined in a fair and consistent manner. Authoritative parents are also flexible. If there are extenuating circumstances, they will allow the child to explain what happened and adjust their response accordingly. Because authoritative parents act as role models and exhibit the same behaviour they expect from their children, kids are more likely to initialize these behaviours. Consistent rules and discipline allow children to know what to expect. Because rules exhibit good emotional understanding and control, children learn to manage their won emotions and learn to understand others as well. Authoritative parents also allow children to act independently, which teaches kids that they are capable of accomplishing things on their own, helping foster strong self-esteem and self-confidence.

The Uninvolved style

The uninvolved style is sometimes referred to as neglectful parenting. It is a style characterized by lack of responsiveness to a child’s needs. Uninvolved parents make few, to no demand of their children and they are often indifferent, dismissive or even completely neglectful. These parents have little emotional involvement with their children. While they provide for their basic needs like food and shelter, they are uninvolved in their children’s lives. The degree of involvement may vary considerably. Some uninvolved parents may be relatively hands-off with their kids, but may still have some basic limits such as curfews.


The general objective of this study is to examine parenting styles and attitude on student drinking. The specific objectives include;

1.     To investigate the correlation between authoritative parenting styles and student drinking?

2.     To find out if authoritarian parenting style has a positive relationship with children’s drinking?

3.     To examine if permissive parenting style has a significant association with children’s drinking?


i.            The findings of the study would help parents better understand their children’s development in light of their own parenting practices and fully realize the implications of these practices on their children’s current and future success.

ii.            Upon completion of this study, the findings would be relevant to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organizations (UNESCO), and the World Health Organization (WHO), since they all work for the survival, right, development and protection of children.

iii.            The study outcome would also be relevant to religious bodies as it will help them to educate parents on how best or preferable to bring up their children.

iv.            The findings of this study would be relevant to welfare authorities who deal with the issue of children upbringing.

v.            The research outcome would also be relevant to schools and teachers as an insight into understanding the extent to which parental practices affect Student.

vi.            It will also serve as an additional research material to other researchers, or a reference material to be consulted in future studies or academic inquiry.

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