It’s no lie when they say that the experiences that you have in your childhood can really leave a lasting impression on you as you make your way through life. Even the little things like simple conversations with parents can really be ingrained in a person’s mind.
You take all of your accumulated experiences as you are growing up and they all help shape and mold you to be the person you are now. A lot of who you are at this moment is a direct result of the people and experiences that you have encountered along the way. That’s an uncontestable fact at this point. And to bank on that, this article is going to focus on the specific effects and influences that your parents can have on you in your adult life.
Science has shown that the way that your mother and father parented you as a child can actually have a huge difference on the person you grow up to be. Research has found that when children are allowed to grow up in a nurturing and caring environment that is formed by a mother, then they are likely to grow up to be happier as adults.
When mothers are more affectionate towards their children, these kids are less likely to become victims of depression and other diseases related to mental health in the future. The same is true with dads as well. Kids who grow up with loving, caring, and supportive fathers are also less likely to develop symptoms associated with depression also. There is substantial evidence that shows that growing up in a loving home environment lowers the levels of stress and helps form a healthier mindset for a person to live a better quality of life.
The good memories that you have as a kid are going to affect the way that you conduct yourself as an adult later on in life. You might think that a lot of your memories are going to fade and wither over the course of time. And that’s true. You are not always going to recall specific instances wherein teaching points were imparted unto you.
However, the study has confirmed that even though you don’t necessarily remember all the details surrounding an important parenting moment, the lessons that you take away from them always stick with you – even decades down the line. You might not remember the shirt that you were wearing when your mom was teaching you an important lesson about manners but you’re always going to keep that lesson to heart as you get older.
The study was headed by a leading expert in the field named Dr. William Chopik. He said, “One might expect childhood memories to matter less and less over time, but these memories still predicted better physical and mental health when people were in middle age and older adulthood.”
The study was actually conducted by leading experts and researchers from Michigan State University. These experts gathered all pertinent data and information from the National Survey of Midlife Development and they decided to conflate it with data from the Health and Retirement Study. The analysis of all this data allowed them to take a very informed look into the lives of around 22,000 people.
In a certain sense, they were able to get a sense of the kind of relationships that these participants had with their parents. The study really delved into the level of affection that these people received from their parents during their childhood. Other factors were also taken into consideration such as the level of attentiveness and the supportiveness of the parents with regards to the problems and challenges that the kids faced during their earlier years.
To gain more perspective on the issue, they had also posted inquiries into the health conditions of the participants as they had gotten older. And this is where the links between parenting and depression were found. The results were not necessarily extremely straightforward. However, it is conclusive that the relationships that a child has with parents during the course of childhood could have a serious impact on a person’s emotional and mental well-being as an adult.
“We know memory plays a huge part in how we make sense of the world – how we organize our past experiences and how we judge how we should act in the future. As a result, there are a lot of different ways that our memories of the past can guide us,” says Dr. Chopik. “We found good memories seem to have a positive effect on health and well-being, possibly through the ways that they reduce stress or help us maintain healthy choices in life.”
There hasn’t really been much research conducted on this particular topic in the past. However, it can be hard to dispute the trajectory on which this particular study has placed us. It is also essential to note that even though parenting plays a big role in the formation of a child’s future, it’s not the whole story. You always have the power to break the mold. You are not defined by your parents and you can always be an exception to the rule.