The Search Institute has evidence through a national study showing the significance of strong, healthy familial relationships within young people’s lives. Those benefits include growth in the following areas: academic motivation, personal responsibility, safe behaviors, and the ability to understand social-emotional situations.
Despite the positive effects, healthy relationships are not necessarily common. The study revealed that one in five children reported having no healthy relationships with any family members. While this may not sound like much, once it’s broken down the true nature of this depravity is clear.
When asking 25,395 middle and high school students how many strong relationships they have, the Search Institute found:
When the data is broken down and viewed as it is in the framework above, it paints the picture in a more comprehensive and startling way. The majority of participants don’t have one healthy familial relationship.
When asked where they experienced strong developmental relationships the most, many students reported with parenting adults. This makes it important to cultivate the parent-child bond.
Further research shows the need to foster parent-child relationships being more prominent through adolescence as such relationships tend to weaken during this period of time. Maintaining these bonds become even more challenging for families undergoing financial strain, making it less likely for families to experience the five elements necessary for strong developmental relationships.
Those elements are:
There are programs available through the UFRC such as Family Development and Financial Stability for families who seek to foster strong and healthy relationships. To explore these options, call 864-578-6013.
According to The Search Institute, “Developmental relationships between youth and parenting adults are consistently associated with multiple areas of well-being and thriving for young people . . .”