Kids get eyeful of parental misbehavior
Chu Zhaohui, a senior researcher at the National Institute of Education Sciences, said that as a child’s first teachers, the parents have a major influence on how children will behave.
Children usually learn by imitating the behavior of the people around them, especially parents, without knowing if the behavior is good or bad, he said.
“Children who are lied to by their parents are more likely to behave dishonestly themselves,” he said.
“Parents may lie to their kids to make their kids behave or to protect their feelings. However, they can unintentionally teach their kids that lying is a normal thing to do if they keep doing it. Even white lies — innocent, harmless lies — can set an example that lies are all right.”
Xiong Bingqi, deputy director of the 21st Century Education Research Institute, said children are very impressionable when it comes to curse words even if they do not know the meaning.
They might think it is a cool word, or try to get your attention by using it. Habitual cursing by parents can definitely affect children and normalize their use of curse words, he said.
“As parents, we are often blind to our own bad habits, yet bad habits, harmful lifestyle choices or mental health issues can negatively affect our children, and that’s why parents need to hold themselves to a high standard around their children,” he said.