Home » News » Parenting » Parental Tactics to Manage Adolescent Behavior
Parental Tactics to Manage Adolescent Behavior

Parental Tactics to Manage Adolescent Behavior

New research finds that the way your teen perceives your parenting tactics, makes a big difference in whether they will comply or rebel with your admonitions.

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside (UCR), found that when teens viewed their parents’ parenting tactics more negatively that parents did, they showed elevated levels of aggressive behaviors.

“Most, if not all, parents agree that they and their teenage children hold different views about how parenting is going at home,” explains Misaki Natsuaki, a psychology professor at UCR.

“In some cases, teens perceive parenting to be harsher than how their parents intend to — in other cases, teens perceive parenting to be more lenient than how parents intend to. With this study, it’s become clear that both the teens’ and parents’ views of how parents manage their teens’ difficult behaviors were uniquely important in predicting teenage problem behaviors.”

The study, authored by Natsuaki and graduate student Laura Dimler, is called “Parenting Effects are in the Eye of the Beholder: Parent-Adolescent Differences in Perceptions Affects Adolescent Problem Behaviors. The work appears in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence.

Investigators focused on how parents manage their teenagers’ challenging behaviors (e.g., anger) and examined teen-parent discrepancies in views about those behaviors. Using data from 220 families, the researchers found that, when teens viewed parenting more negatively than parents did, they showed more elevated levels of problem behaviors, such as aggression.

“This effect of teen-parent discrepancies in perceptions of parenting behaviors was above and beyond how negatively the adolescent and parent each felt about the parenting,” Natsuaki said.

“Therefore, nuanced characteristics of the family, such as who holds more negative views than whom and how much the differences in views exists within the relationship, contribute to teens’ problem behaviors.”

The study also highlights the importance of adolescents’ evaluation on how mothers and fathers handle their difficult behaviors.

Mother’s perception of her response to her teenager’s anger was significantly correlated with externalizing behavior, but not with aggressive behaviors. Father’s perception of his response to his teenager’s anger was significantly correlated with externalizing behaviors and with aggressive behaviors.

“Fathers are relatively understudied compared to mothers, but our findings show that the father-teen relationship is a unique one, and has the potential to exacerbate or hinder the teens’ problem behavior, including aggressive behavior,” Natsuaki said.

Source: University of California, Riverside

Parental Tactics to Manage Adolescent Behavior

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2018). Parental Tactics to Manage Adolescent Behavior. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 24, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Aug 2018 (Originally: 9 Dec 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Aug 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.