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The influences of family environment on personality traits

by Kazuhisa Nakao, Jyo Takaishi, Kenji Tatsuta, Hisanori Katayama, Madoka Iwase, Kazuhiro Yorifuji, Masatoshi Takeda
Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences ()
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In order to clarify the influences of family environment on the development of personality traits, 150 children (104 males and 46 females, mean age 13.2 +/- 2.4 years) who had been interviewed at the Child Guidance Clinic in Osaka were investigated. From 13 behavioral characteristics (activity, talkativeness, sociability, social skills, rule-keeping, will, aggression, emotional control, imagination, anxiety, maturity, intelligence, and neuroticism), factor analysis identified three personality traits: extraversion, maturity, and intellect. The effects of family environment (maternal and paternal participation in child rearing before and after 4years of age, child-rearing style, parental relationship, sibling relationship, number of siblings, birth order, and socioeconomic status) on these personality traits were examined based on a structural equation model. The results found, first, that extraversion was negatively associated with overprotection/interference and with maternal participation in child rearing. Maturity correlated with high socioeconomic status, appropriate child-rearing style, and paternal participation in child rearing. Intellect was related to high socioeconomic status and maternal participation in child rearing. Second, path analysis with selected variables revealed that 8% of variance in extraversion, 14% in maturity, and 10% in intellect was due to family environment. Third, children with high introversion or high intellect had stronger influences from family environment than did those with high extraversion or low intellect.

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