PARENTAL DECEPTION: INVESTIGATING THE EFFECTS OF DECEPTION ON PARENT-CHILD RELATIONSHIPS
Cargill, Joscelyn Renee
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Psychologists have completed much research in the broad field of deception, but an emerging topic is the deception within parent/child relationships. Previous studies have shown that parents lie to their children in order to control their actions and emotions (e.g., Heyman, Luu, & Lee, 2009; Heyman, Hsu, Fu, & Lee, 2013). There appears to be a gap in the area of research pertaining to the implications of parents lying to their children. The goal of the current study was to examine the effects of parental lies on the parent/child relationship. A survey was conducted that determined what kinds of lies parents have told to their children, how serious the lies were (as determined by the child), and how the lies effected the parent/child relationship. The current study found that parental deception is related to satisfaction within the parent/child relationship. Results also showed that perceived seriousness of the lie does not impact relational satisfaction and parents are more likely to use white lies than any other types. These results have implications for not only the parent/child relationship, but also education and communication.