Despite the eye rolling and slamming doors — Dear parents, don’t worry, your children are listening to your every word. Your constant nagging might inevitably annoy them, and whether they realise it or not, science has proven that it really works!
According to a study of over 15,000 British girls aged 13 and 14 for six years, researchers found that high parental expectations led to adolescent girls’ success later in life. In fact, when the “main parent”—usually the mother—set steep standards for their daughters’ education, those girls were more likely to attend college, take better-paying jobs, and avoid teen pregnancy.
Experts say that communicating high expectations to your child will make them feel more inclined to live up to those standards. On the other hand, if no one pays attention to their performance, they are more likely to slack off.
“In many cases, we succeeded in doing what we believed was more convenient for us, even when this was against our parents’ will,” Dr. Ericka Rascon-Ramirez, who led the study, said. “But no matter how hard we tried to avoid our parents’ recommendations, it is likely that they ended up influencing, in a more subtle manner, choices that we had considered extremely personal.”
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As a grown up woman who is reaching my 30s, I have to say: yup, I can totally relate with this statement. Even though I didn’t see it coming, I worked really hard to be successful and achieved everything in my own terms — but at the end of the day, all I ever wanted to do was to impress my parents.
Looks like nagging just became one of the essential rules for raising teenagers, boy or girl. After all, a little “I told you so” never hurt anyone.