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J Adolesc. 2007 Oct;30(5):709-20. Epub 2007 Jan 29.

Parenting styles, coping strategies, and the expression of homesickness.

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Behavioural Science Institute, Radboud University Nijmegen, P.O. Box 9104, 6500 HE Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


The present study examined the role of parenting styles in the experience and expression of homesickness, and the way of coping with the feelings involved. Using a sample of 670 first year college and university students, aged 16 to 25, we tested three hypotheses: (1) authoritarian, permissive as well as uninvolved parenting are associated with the experience of homesickness, contrary to students with authoritative parents who are less likely to have feelings of homesickness; (2) students with authoritarian, permissive or uninvolved parents show their homesickness by internalizing and externalizing problems; and (3) students raised by authoritative or permissive parents use more effective coping strategies to deal with homesickness. Results indicated that students raised by authoritative and permissive parents experienced more homesickness with stronger feelings of homesickness than students raised by authoritarian or uninvolved parents. However, they hardly express homesickness by internalizing or externalizing problems when they use effective ways of coping, namely support-seeking and/or problem-solving. Students with parents endorsing an authoritarian or uninvolved parenting style, on the other hand, showed more internalizing and externalizing problems in reaction to feelings of homesickness. They also use less effective coping strategies. The results revealed the importance of a loving and accepting home environment for the development and expression of homesickness, as well as the importance of the way in which students learn to cope with their problems.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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