Researchers looked at 36 studies from around the world involving some 10,000 participants and found a common theme. They found that consistently, when children feel rejected from their parents they become more anxious, insecure, hostile, and aggressive toward others. Here’s how co-author of the review, Ronald Rohner explains it.
In our half-century of international research, we’ve not found any other class of experience that has as strong and consistent effect on personality and personality development as does the experience of rejection, especially by parents in childhood.
And whether the father’s love matters more than the mother depends on how your child sees you. Psychologists working on the International Father Acceptance Rejection Project (yes, someone is doing that!) think that children pay more attention to the parent they think has more prestige or interpersonal power.
So if Dad has a more dominant personality in the home his love — or lack of love — with matter more to his kids than their mother’s love. It’s a sobering thought. We don’t need science to tell us that. Except that we kind of do, because people still end up blaming moms for how kids turn out.
And it goes the other way. Dads should get more credit when they’re emotionally present. Props to you good dads who shower your kids with love and attention. Your love matters just as much as moms’.