Recalled Parent-Child Relations and Adult Personality

Authors

  • Robert R. McCrae,

    Corresponding author
    1. Gerontology Research Center National Institute on Aging, NIH
      Requests for reprints may be sent to Robert R McCrae, Personality, Stress and Coping Section, Gerontology Research Center, NIA, Francis Scott Key Medical Center, Baltimore, MD 21224
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  • Paul T. Costa Jr

    1. Gerontology Research Center National Institute on Aging, NIH
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  • Thanks are due to Dr Chris Plato for providing information on subject kinship

Requests for reprints may be sent to Robert R McCrae, Personality, Stress and Coping Section, Gerontology Research Center, NIA, Francis Scott Key Medical Center, Baltimore, MD 21224

Abstract

ABSTRACT Adult children's ratings of their parents' behaviors on the Parent-Child Relation Questionnaire II were correlated with self-reports and peer ratings of personality on the NEO Personality Inventory in a sample of 619 men and women aged 21 to 96 Individuals who reported that their parents were loving scored lower in neuroticism and higher in extraversion, openness to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness Individuals, especially men, who described their parents as casual rather than demanding were lower m extraversion and conscientiousness, but higher in openness Parental attention (i e, spoiling) was associated with extraversion and low agreeableness Several of these correlations were replicated when peer ratings of personality were examined However, all the associations were modest, and several alternative explanations suggest that the correlations may exaggerate the influence of these childrearing practices on adult personality Parental behaviors and attitudes seem to have less effect on broad dimensions of adult personality than traditionally supposed

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