Study: Avoiding blame is smart way to resolve family conflicts

A UT Dallas researcher says there’s a smart way for children and parents to disagree—and it doesn’t involve casting blame.

Dr. Jackie Nelson, assistant professor in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, said  and children who focused discussions on future-oriented planning, rather than accusations and culpability, were more likely to reach a compromise in which both parents’ and children’s goals are realized. In addition, her research showed that how conflicts are resolved can predict changes in children’s externalizing problems a year later.

“Our research shows that when parents and children use constructive strategies, there is a better plan to manage future conflicts, skills that children are likely taking into the peer domain,” Nelson said.

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