Family Facts #41

Looking up to their mothers as a female role model has predominantly psychological health benefits for youth. Both male and female students who did not look up to their mothers and perceive them as positive role models exhibited more psychological distress than those who did.

“Role Models and Psychosocial Outcomes Among African-American Adolescents”
Bryant, Alison L.
and Zimmerman, Marc A.
Journal of Adolescent Research Vol. 18, Number 1. , 2003. Page(s) 36-67.

Published by

Joe Carter

Joe Carter founded Evangelical Outpost in 2005. He is the web editor for First Things and an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. A fifteen-year Marine Corps veteran, he previously served as the managing editor for the online magazine Culture11 and The East Texas Tribune. Joe has also served as the Director of Research and Rapid Response for the Mike Huckabee for President campaign and as a director of communications for both the Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity and Family Research Council. He is the co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicaton.

  • Dooz

    Having had kids in the local public schools for 20 years (53 student-years in 5 schools) and my wife being a teacher, I have seen first hand a sufficient number of kids and their behavior and learning patterns to be able to make some assertions.
    1. Despite all attempts by the education elite, the school is still powerless to overcome the influence of the home. The family (or lack thereof, or “reasonable facsimile thereof”) almost always and almost completely determines how the child will grow, behave, learn, achieve (or not).
    Parents who fail/refuse to take responsibility for their actions raise children who won’t take responsibility for their actions. Parents who are too self-centered to train their children have children who grow up being two-year-olds all their lives.
    Parents who expect their children to behave properly, to learn and achieve, and who discipline their children anywhere near properly have children who behave, achieve, and grow up to be successful.
    Having been privy to district statistics, I know that children from two-parent homes earn better grades than almost any others. (I say almost because–and I was surprised by this–children being raised by a single father do best of all. It’s surmised that single-fathers-with-custody tend to be educated, achieving, and provide the best care for their children, even if they have to buy it.)
    Looking up to Mom? It works, but only if Mom is worthy of being looked up to.
    Ditto for Dad (where applicable). (“Uncles” [aka “Mom’s friends”] don’t count.)
    Not PC, but true, nevertheless.
    [Assertions 2-n pale in comparison–maybe some other time.]