Whew! What a relief. According to a new study published in the International Journal of Behavioural Development, some children's behavior problems can be attributed to their genes. Yep -- they may inherit crappy traits from us, which is why some of them act out when they enter the preschool phase while other children are perfectly fine and continue to thrive.
Researchers at Oregon State University looked at 233 different families. And guess what? The kids whose parents were more negative and lacked self-control were the ones who were more likely to have behavior issues after being shipped off to preschool.
And I guess you could look at the results and see them in a bad light, well -- because the research suggests that some of our kids are actually meant to turn into monsters.
But on the other hand, doesn't this take some of the guilt and pressure off of us a little bit? I mean, think about it this way. If you get a call from the preschool teacher telling you your 3-year-old is throwing tantrums and being disruptive in class, you can rest assured that it has nothing to do with whether or not you picked the right preschool -- or whether or not you're doing a good job with the whole parenting thing. It's all thanks to your (nah, probably your husband's) shitty genes -- and the kid was simply destined to be a trouble maker from birth.
Doesn't this offer some peace of mind? I know I've sat down feeling all defeated in the past wondering if I could be doing a better job as a mom in raising my kid to be a decent human being -- but what if it's all a matter of genetics and it doesn't really matter what any of us do?
Huh. See? We can finally stop feeling guilty about working, not working, or choosing one particular parenting method over the other. Our kids are who they are -- and there isn't a damn thing we can do about it. I dig it.
Do you think kids' behavior is predetermined, or does how you raise them matter?
Image via Patrik Giardino/Corbis