Familial pot boiler: Pressures from inside and outside and parental psychological control

Limor Goldner, Miri Scharf, Nitzan Scharf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The current study examined the contribution of both external (socialization goals) and internal parental characteristics (attachment insecurity, contingent self-worth, and parental helplessness) to parental psychological control (PPC). A sample of 159 Israeli triads of mothers, fathers, and elementary-school-age children participated in the study. The findings of parents’ self-reports indicated associations between fathers’ and mothers’ socialization goals, attachment orientations, parental helplessness, contingent self-worth, and PPC. A mediation path analysis model revealed direct positive associations between mothers’ and fathers’ contingent self-worth, socialization goals emphasizing obedience, and their self-reports of PPC. Mothers’ autonomous socialization goals had a direct negative association with maternal and child-reported PPC. A direct association was found between fathers’ attachment anxiety and paternal PPC, while indirect associations were found between mothers’ contingent self-worth, attachment avoidance and anxiety, and maternal PPC through mothers’ helplessness. The results highlight how internal and external factors can increase PPC, possibly putting children at risk.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Developmental Science
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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