Parenting behavior and the risk of becoming a victim and a bully/victim: a meta-analysis study.Child Abuse Negl. 2013 Dec; 37(12):1091-108.CA
Being bullied has adverse effects on children's health. Children's family experiences and parenting behavior before entering school help shape their capacity to adapt and cope at school and have an impact on children's peer relationship, hence it is important to identify how parenting styles and parent-child relationship are related to victimization in order to develop intervention programs to prevent or mitigate victimization in childhood and adolescence.
We conducted a systematic review of the published literature on parenting behavior and peer victimization using MEDLINE, PsychINFO, Eric and EMBASE from 1970 through the end of December 2012. We included prospective cohort studies and cross-sectional studies that investigated the association between parenting behavior and peer victimization.
Both victims and those who both bully and are victims (bully/victims) were more likely to be exposed to negative parenting behavior including abuse and neglect and maladaptive parenting. The effects were generally small to moderate for victims (Hedge's g range: 0.10-0.31) but moderate for bully/victims (0.13-0.68). Positive parenting behavior including good communication of parents with the child, warm and affectionate relationship, parental involvement and support, and parental supervision were protective against peer victimization. The protective effects were generally small to moderate for both victims (Hedge's g: range: -0.12 to -0.22) and bully/victims (-0.17 to -0.42).
Negative parenting behavior is related to a moderate increase of risk for becoming a bully/victim and small to moderate effects on victim status at school. Intervention programs against bullying should extend their focus beyond schools to include families and start before children enter school.