Empathy and sympathy as mediators between parental inductive discipline and prosocial behavior in Colombian families
Ivon Paola Guevara
Family Institute, Universidad de la Sabana, Bogotá, Colombia.
Victoria Eugenia Cabrera
Family Institute, Universidad de la Sabana, Bogotá, Colombia.
Martha Rocío Gonzalez
Department of Psychology, Universidad de la Sabana Bogotá, Colombia.
Jose Vicente Devis
Department of Psychology, Universidad de la Sabana Bogotá, Colombia.
PDF

Keywords

Empathy
sympathy
adolescence
prosocial behavior
inductive discipline.

How to Cite

Guevara, I., Cabrera, V., Rocío Gonzalez, M., & Devis, J. (2015). Empathy and sympathy as mediators between parental inductive discipline and prosocial behavior in Colombian families. International Journal of Psychological Research, 8(2), 34-48. https://doi.org/10.21500/20112084.1508
PDF

Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate the mediation of adolescent empathy and sympathy between parental inductive discipline and adolescent prosocial behavior, as well as to understand whether there are differences between male and female adolescents regarding moral emotions and prosocial behavior and differences between fathers and mothers regarding inductive discipline. The study enrolled 717 participants: 239 fathers, 239 mothers, and one adolescent child of each paired mother and father. Two models of mediation were undertaken, one for empathy and another for sympathy, both resulted statistically significant. Significant differences were also found between male and female adolescents in empathy but not in sympathy or prosocial behavior; specifically, female adolescents tended to be more empathetic than male adolescents. We suggest future studies focus on prosocial behavior associated with parental socioeconomic and educational levels.
PDF

References

Baron, R. M., & Kenny, D. A. (1986). The moderator-mediator variable distinction in social psychological research: Conceptual, strategic, and statistical considerations. Journal of

R E S E A R C H

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH Empathy and Sympathy as mediators in prosocial behavior

Guevara et al. (2015) Int.j.psychol.res. 8 (2) PP. 34 - 48

Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 1173-1182.

Barr, J. J., & Higgins-D'Alessandro, A. (2009). How adolescent empathy and prosocial behavior change in the context of school culture: A two-year longitudinal study. Adolescence, 44, 751-72. doi: 20432599

Barrera, F. (2003). Conexiones entre las prácticas parentales y las competencias psicosociales propias de la autonomía y la vinculación de los hijos [Connections between parenting practices and psychosocial competencies of child autonomy and bonding]. Proyecto presentado a la convocatoria cofinanciación de proyectos del Centro de Estudios Socioculturales e Internacionales CESO [Project presented at the project cofinacing convening of the CESO Sociocultural and International Study Center], Social Sciences Department, Universidad de Los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia.

Bush, K. R., & Peterson, G. W. (2008). Family influences on childhood development. In T. P. Gullotta (Ed.), Handbook of childhood behavioral issues (pp. 43-67). New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.

Cabrera, González, & Guevara (2012). Estrés parental, trato rudo y monitoreo como factores asociados al comportamiento agresivo. Universitas Psychologica, 11, 1, 657-670.

Cabrera, V., & Guevara, I. (2007). Relaciones familiares y ajuste psicológico: Dos estudios en adolescentes de familias colombianas. [Family relationships and psychological adjustment: Two studies of adolescents in Colombian families.] Bogotá, Colombia: Ediciones Uniandes.

Calvete, E., Gámez-Gaudix, M. & Orue, I. (2010). El inventario de dimensiones de disciplina (DDI), versión niños y adolescentes: Estudio de las prácticas de disciplina parental desde una perspectiva de género [The disciplinary dimensions inventory (DDI), child and adolescent version: Study of parental discipline practices from a perspective of gender]. Anales de Psicología, 26, 410-418.

Caprara, G., & Pastorelli, C. (1993). Early emotional instability, prosocial behaviour, and aggression: Some methodological aspects. European Journal of Personality, 7, 19-36.

Caprara, G. V., Steca, P., Zelli, A., & Capanna, C. (2005). A new scale for measuring adult’s prosocialness. European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 21, 77-89. DOI 10.1027/1015-5759.21.2.77

Carlo, G., McGinley, M., Hayes, R. & Martínez, M. (2012). Empathy as a mediator of the relations between parent and peer attachment and prosocial and physically aggressive behaviors in Mexican American college students. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 29, 3, 337-357. doi: 10.1177/0265407511431181

Carlo, G., Knight, G., McGinley, M., & Hayes, R. (2011). The roles of parental inductions, moral emotions, and moral cognitions in prosocial tendencies among Mexican American and European American early adolescents. Journal of Early Adolescence, 31, 757-781. doi: 10.1177/0272431610373100

Carlo, G., McGinley, M., Hayes, R., Batenhorst, C., & Wilkinson, J. (2007). Parenting styles or practices? Parenting, sympathy, and prosocial behaviors among adolescents. The Journal of Genetic Psychology, 168, 147-176. doi:10.3200/GNTP.168.2.147-176

Carlo, G., Mestre, M. V., Samper, P., Tur, A., & Armenta, B. E. (2011). The longitudinal relations among dimensions of parenting styles, sympathy, prosocial moral reasoning, and prosocial behaviors. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 35, 116-124. doi: 10.1177/0165025410375921

Carlo, G., Raffaelli, M., Laible, D., & Meyer, K. (1999). Why are girls less physically aggressive than boys? Personality and parenting mediators of psysical aggression. Sex Roles: A Journal of Research, 40, 711-729. Doi: 10.1023/A:1018856601513

Cavell, T. (2000). Working with parents of aggressive children. A Practitioner’s Guide. Journal of primary prevention. 24, 3, 407- 409

Čavojová, V., Belovičová, Z., & Sirota, M. (2011). Mindreading and empathy as predictors of prosocial behavior. Studia Psychologica, 53, 351-362.

Cepeda, A. (2003). La relación inversa entre empatía y agresión: Precisiones conceptuales y metodológicas. Un estudio con niño(a)s de cuarto de primaria [The inverse relationship between empathy and aggression: Conceptual and methodological considerations. A study of 4th grade children (Unpublished thesis). Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia.

Chaux, E., Castro, L., Daza, J., Díaz, C., & Hurtado, N. (2004). Empatía: Instrumento de autoreporte [Empathy: Self-reporting

R E S E A R C H

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH Empathy and Sympathy as mediators in prosocial behavior

Guevara et al. (2015) Int.j.psychol.res. 8 (2) PP. 34 - 48

instrument.] Unpublished document, Bogotá, Colombia: Universidad de los Andes.

Chaux, E. (2002). Buscando pistas para prevenir la violencia urbana en Colombia: Conflictos y agresión entre niños y adolescentes de Bogotá. Revista de Estudios Sociales, 12, 41-51

Cuervo, A. (2010). Pautas de crianza y desarrollo socioafectivo en la infancia [Child rearing guidelines and socioaffective development in childhood] Diversitas: Perspectivas en Psicología, 6, 111-121.

Crick, N. & Pepler, D. (2007). Understanding bullying: From research to practice. Canadian Psychology, 48, 2, 86-93. doi.org/10.1037/cp2007010

Crick, N., Casas, J. & Mosher, M. (1997). Relational and overt aggression in preschool. Developmental Psychology, 33, 4, 579-588. doi.org/10.1037/0012-1649.33.4.579

Davis, M. H. (1980). A multidimensional approach to individual differences in empathy. JSAS Catalog of Selected Documents in Psychology, 10, 85-103.

Davis, M. H. (1996). Empathy. A social psychological approach. Boulder, CO: Westview Press.

Dekovic, M., Janssens, J. M., & Van As, N. M. (2003). Family predictors of antisocial behavior in adolescence. Family Process, 42, 223-235. doi: 10.1111/j.1545-5300.2003.42203.x

Dodge, K., & Pettit, G. (2003). A biopsychosocial model of the development of chronic conduct problems in adolescence. Developmental Psychology, 39, 349-371.

Eisenberg, N. (1990). Prosocial development in early and mid adolescence. In R. Montemayor, G. R. Adams, & T. P. Gullotta (Eds.), From childhood to adolescence: A transitional period? (pp. 240-269). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.

Eisenberg, N. (2000). Emotion, regulation, and moral development. Annual Review of Psychology, 51, 665-697. doi: 10.1146/annurev.psych.51.1.665

Eisenberg, N. (2006). Introduction. In W. Damon, R. M. Lerner, & N. Eisenberg (Eds.), Handbook of child psychology, Vol. 3: Social, emotional, and personality development (6th. ed., pp. 1-23). New York, NY: Wiley.

Eisenberg, N., Cumberland, A., Guthrie, I. K., Murphy, B. C., & Shepard, S. A. (2005). Age changes in prosocial responding and moral reasoning in adolescence and early adulthood. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 15, 235–260. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-7795.2005.00095.x

Eisenberg, N., & Fabes, R. A. (1990). Empathy: Conceptualization, assessment, and relation to prosocial behavior. Motivation and Emotion, 14, 131-149. doi 10.1007/BF00991640

Eisenberg, N., & Fabes, R. A. (1998). Prosocial development. In W. Damon & N. Eisenberg (Eds.), Handbook of child psychology, Vol. 3: Social, emotional, and personality development (5th. ed., pp. 701-778). New York, NY: Wiley.

Eisenberg, N., Fabes, R. A., Shepard, S. A., Murphy, B. C., Jones, J., & Guthrie, I. K. (1998). Contemporaneous and longitudinal prediction of children’s sympathy from dispositional regulation and emotionality. Developmental Psychology, 34, 910-924. doi.org/10.1037/0012-1649.34.5.910

Eisenberg, N., & Murphy, B. (1995). Parenting and children’s moral development. In M. Bornstein (Ed.), Handbook of parenting (Vol. 4, pp. 227-257). New York, NY: Wiley.

Eisenberg, N., & Sheffield, A. (2004). Moral cognitions and prosocial responding in adolescence. In R. M. Lerner & L. Steinberg (Eds.), Handbook of adolescent psychology (2nd. ed., pp. 155-188). New York, NY: Wiley.

Eisenberg, N., & Strayer, J. (1992). La empatía y su desarrollo [Empathy and its development]. Bilbao, Spain: Descleé de Brouwer.

Eisenberg, N., Zhou, Q., & Koller, S. (2001). Brazilian adolescents’ prosocial moral judgment and behavior: Relations to sympathy, perspective taking, gender-role orientation, and demographic characteristics. Child Development, 72, 518-534. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-7795.2005.00095

Etxebarría, I., Apodaca, P., Fuentes, M. J., López, F., & Ortiz, M. J. (2009). La crianza y la educación de los hijos en la sociedad actual ¿Lo estamos haciendo bien? [Child rearing and education of children in current society. Are we doing it well?] Revista de Psicología Social, 24, 81-96. doi:10.1174/021347409786922952

Garaigordobil, M., Maganto, C., Pérez, J. I., & Sansinenea, E. (2009). Gender differences in socioemotional factors during adolescence and effects of a violence prevention program. Journal of Adolescent Health, 44, 468-477. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2008.09.014.

R E S E A R C H

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH Empathy and Sympathy as mediators in prosocial behavior

Guevara et al. (2015) Int.j.psychol.res. 8 (2) PP. 34 - 48

Garner, P. W. (2012). Children's emotional responsiveness and sociomoral understanding and associations with mothers' and fathers' socialization practices. Infant Mental Health Journal, 33, 95-106. doi: 10.1002/imhj.20339

Geng, Y., Xia, D., & Qin, B. (2012). The Basic Empathy Scale: A Chinese validation of a measure of empathy in adolescents. Child Psychiatry & Human Development, 43, 499-510. doi: 10.1007/s10578-011-0278-6.

Goodnow, J. (2010). Fuentes, efectos y cambios posibles en habilidades parentales: Comentarios sobre Belsky, Grusec, y Sanders y Morawska [Sources, effects, and possible changes in parenting abilities: Commentaries on Belsky, Grusec, and Sanders and Morawska]. Retrieved from http://www.enciclopedia-infantes.com/pages/PDF/habilidades_parentales.pdf

Gladstone, G., Parker, G. & Malhi, G. (2006). Do bullied children become anxious and depressed adults? A cross-sectional investigation of the correlates of bullying and anxious depression. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 194, 3, 201-208. doi: 10.1097/01.nmd.0000202491.99719.c3

Guevara, I., Cabrera, V., & Barrera, F. (2007). Factores contextuales y moral emotions como predictores del ajuste psicológico en la adolescencia [Contextual factors and moral emotions as predictors of psychological adjustment in adolescence]. Universitas Psychologica, 6, 269-283.

Hoffman, M. (1983). Affective and cognitive process in moral internalization: An information processing approach. In E. T. D. Higgins, D. Ruble, & W. Hartup (Eds.), Social cognition and social development: A socio–cultural perspective (pp. 236-274). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Hoffman, M. L. (1998). Varieties of empathy based guilt. In J. Bybee (Ed.), Guilt and children (pp. 91-110). London, UK: Academic Press. Hoffman, M. L. (2000). Empathy and moral development: Implications for caring and justice. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Hoffman, M. (2002). Desarrollo moral y empatía. Implicaciones para la atención and la justicia [Moral development and empathy. Implications for caring and justice]. Barcelona: Idea Books, S.A. Holmgren, R., Eisenberg, N., & Fabes, R. A. (1998). The relations of children’s situational empathy related emotions to dispositional prosocial behaviour. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 22, 169-193. doi:10.1080/016502598384568 Krevans, J., & Gibbs, J. (1996). Parent's use of inductive discipline: Relations to children's empathy and prosocial behavior. Child Development, 67, 3263-3277. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.1996.tb01913.x

Maibom, H. L. (2012). The many faces of empathy and their relation to prosocial action and aggression inhibition. WIREs Cognitive Science, 3, 253-263. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1165

MacKinnon, D. P., Fairchild, A. J., & Fritz, M. S. (2007). Mediation analysis. Annual Review of Psychology, 58, 593 – 614. doi: 10.1146/annurev.psych.58.110405.085542

MacKinnon, D. P., Lockwood, C. M., & Williams, J. (2004). Confidence limits for the indirect effect: Distribution of the product and resampling methods. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 39, 99 – 128. doi: 10.1207/s15327906mbr3901_4

Mestre, M. V., Samper, P., Tur, A. M., Cortés, M. T., & Nácher, M. J. (2006). Conducta prosocial y procesos psicológicos implicados: Un estudio longitudinal en la adolescencia [Prosocial behavior and implicated psychological processes: A longitudinal study in adolescence]. Revista Mexicana de Psicología, 23, 203-215.

Mestre, M. V., Tur, A., Samper, P., & Latorre, A. (2010). Inestabilidad emocional y agresividad. Factores predictores [Emotional instability and aggressiveness. Predicting factors]. Ansiedad and Estrés, 16, 33-45.

Mestre, M. V., Tur, A. M., Samper, P., Nácher, M. J., & Cortés, M. T. (2007). Estilos de crianza en la adolescencia y su relación con el comportamiento prosocial [Child rearing styles in adolescence and its relationship with prosocial behavior]. Revista Latinoamericana de Psicología, 39, 211-225. doi.org/10.14349/rlp.v39i2.434

Miller, P. A., & Eisenberg, N. (1988). The relation of empathy to aggressive and externalizing/antisocial behavior. Psychological Bulletin, 103, 324-344. doi.org/10.1037/0033-2909.103.3.324

Navarro, E. (2004). Género y relaciones personales íntimas [Gender and intimate personal

R E S E A R C H

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH Empathy and Sympathy as mediators in prosocial behavior

Guevara et al. (2015) Int.j.psychol.res. 8 (2) PP. 34 - 48

relationships]. In E. Barberá & I. Martínez (Eds.), Psicología y género [Psychology and gender] (pp. 171-192). Madrid, Spain: Pearson Education.

Oliva, A., Parra, A., & Arranz, E. (2008). Estilos relacionales parentales y ajuste del adolescente [Parental relational styles and adolescent adjustment. Childhood and learning]. Infancia and Aprendizaje, 31, 93-106. doi: 10.1174/021037008783487093

Olweus, D. (1993). Conductas de acoso y amenaza entre escolares. Morata.

Organización Panamericana de la Salud para la Organización Mundial de la Salud. (2002). Washington. D.C. Informe mundial sobre la violencia y la salud.

Ortiz, M. J., Apodaca, P., Etxebarria, I., Fuentes, M. J., & López, F. (2007). Predictores de la educación moral en las familias actuales [Predicotrs of moral education in contemporary families]. Infancia y Aprendizaje, 30, 227-244. doi:10.1174/021037007780705247

Ortiz, M. J., Fuentes, M., & López, F. (2003). Desarrollo socio-afectivo en la primera infancia [Socio-affective development in early childhood]. In J. Palacios, A. Marchesi, & C. Coll (Eds.), Desarrollo psicológico y educación 1. Psicología evolutiva [Psychological development and education 1. Evolutionary psychology] (2nd. ed., pp. 151-178). Madrid, Spain: Alianza Editorial.

Padilla-Walker, L. M., Carlo, G., Christensen, K. J., & Yorgason, J. B. (2012), Bidirectional relations between authoritative parenting and adolescents’ prosocial behaviors. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 22, 400–408. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-7795.2012.00807

Padilla-Walker, L. M., & Christensen, K. J. (2011). Empathy and self-regulation as mediators between parenting and adolescents' prosocial behavior toward strangers, friends, and family. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 21, 545-551. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-7795.2010

Panfile, T., & Laible, D. (2012). Attachment security and child's empathy: The mediating role of emotion regulation. Journal of Developmental Psychology, 58, 1-21. doi: 10.1353/mpq.2012.0003

Pichardo, M. C., Justicia, F., & Fernández-Cabezas, M. (2009). Prácticas de crianza y competencia social en niños de 3 a 5 años [Child rearing practices and social competence among children aged 3 to 5 years]. Pensamiento Psicológico, 6, 37-48. doi:10.11600/1692715x.11116030912

Plazas, E., Morón, M., Santiago, A., Sarmiento, H., Ariza, S., & Patiño, C. (2010). Relaciones entre iguales, conducta prosocial y género desde la educación primaria hasta la universitaria en Colombia [Relationships among peers, prosocial conduct and gender from primary to university education in Colombia]. Universitas Psychologica, 9, 357-369.

Preston, S. (2007). A perception-action model for empathy. In T. Farrow & F. Woodruff (Eds.), Empathy in mental illness (pp. 171-192). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Ramaswamy, V., & Bergin, C. (2009). Do reinforcement and induction increase prosocial behavior? Results of a teacher-based intervention in preschools. Journal of Research in Childhood Education, 23, 527-538. doi:10.1080/02568540909594679

Retuerto, A. (2004). Diferencias en empatía en función de las variables género y edad [Differences in empathy as a function of gender and age]. Apuntes de Psicología, 22, 323-339.

Richaud de Minzi, M. (2008). Evaluación de la empatía en población infantil Argentina [Evaluation of empathy in the child population in Argentina]. Revista de Investigación en Psicología, 11, 101-115.

Richaud de Minzi, M. (2009). Influencia del modelado de los padres sobre el desarrollo del razonamiento prosocial en los/las niños/as [Influence of parental modeling on the development of prosocial reasoning in boys and girls]. Interamerican Journal of Psychology, 43, 187-198.

Richaud de Minzi, M., Lemos, V., & Mesurado, B. (2011). Relaciones entre la percepción que tienen los niños de los estilos de relación y de la empatía de los padres y la conducta prosocial en la niñez media y tardía [Relationship between the perceptions that children have of styles of relating and of parental empathy and prosocial conduct in middle and late childhood]. Avances en Psicología Latinoamericana, 29, 330-343.

Romano, E., Tremblay, R. E., Boulerice, B., & Swisher, R. (2005). Multilevel correlates of childhood physical aggression and prosocial behavior. Journal of Abnormal Child

R E S E A R C H

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH Empathy and Sympathy as mediators in prosocial behavior

Guevara et al. (2015) Int.j.psychol.res. 8 (2) PP. 34 - 48

Psychology, 33, 565-578. doi: 10.1007/s10802-005-6738-3

Salmivalli, C., Lagerspetz, K., Björkqvist, K., Österman, K. & Kaukiainen, A. (1996). Bullying as a group process: Participant roles and their relations to social status within the group. Aggressive Behavior, 22, 1-15. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1098-2337(1996)22:1<1::AID-AB1>3.0.CO;2-T

Sánchez-Queija, I., Oliva, A., & Parra, A. (2006). Empatía y conducta prosocial durante la adolescencia [Empathy and prosocial conduct during adolescence]. Revista de Psicología Social, 21, 259-271. doi:10.1174/021347406778538230

Skoe, E. E. A., Cumberland, A., Eisenberg, N., Hansen, K., & Perry, J. (2002). The influences of sex and gender-role identity on moral cognition and prosocial personality traits. Sex Roles, 46, 295-309. doi: 10.1023/A:1020224512888

Sobel, Michael E. (1986). "Some New Results on Indirect Effects and Their Standard Errors in Covariance Structure". Sociological Methodology16: 159–186. doi:10.2307/270922.

Sturge-Apple, M. L., Davies, P. T., Boker, S. M., & Cummings, E. M. (2004). Interparental discord and parenting: Testing the moderating role of child and parent gender. Parenting: Science and practice, 4, 365-384. doi:10.1207/s15327922par0404_7

Sureda, I., Garcia-Bacete, F. J., & Monjas, M. I. (2009). Razones de niños y niñas de diez y once años para preferir o rechazar a sus iguales [Reasons boys and girls aged ten and eleven prefer or reject their peers]. Revista Latinoamericana de Psicología, 41, 305-321. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.14349/rlp.v41i2.382

Tur, A., Mestre, V., Samper, P., & Malonda, E. (2012). Crianza y agresividad de los menores: ¿Es diferente la influencia del padre y de la madre? [Childrearing and juvenile aggressiveness: Is the influence of the father or mother different]? Psicothema, 24, 284-288.

Velásquez, A., Barrera, F., & Bukowski, W. (2006). Crianza y comportamiento moral: Un modelo mediacional [Childrearing and moral behavior: A mediating model]. Suma Psicológica, 13, 141-158. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.14349/sumapsi2006.51

Villegas, C. (2002). Educación para el desarrollo moral [Education for moral development]. Bogota: Colombia: CESO, Universidad de los Andes and Alfaomega Grupo Editor.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

The work that is sent to this journal must be original, not published or sent to be published elsewhere; and if it is accepted for publication, authors will agree to transfer copyright to International Journal of Psychological Research. 

To give up copyright, the authors allow that, International Journal of Psychological Research, distribute the work more broadly, check for the reuse by others and take care of the necessary procedures for the registration and administration of copyright; at the same time, our editorial board represents the interests of the author and allows authors to re-use his work in various forms. In response to the above, authors transfer copyright to the journal, International Journal of Psychological Research. This transfer does not imply other rights which are not those of authorship (for example those that concern about patents). Likewise, preserves the authors rights to use the work integral or partially in lectures, books and courses, as well as make copies for educational purposes. Finally, the authors may use freely the tables and figures in its future work, wherever make explicit reference to the previous publication in International Journal of Psychological Research. The assignment of copyright includes both virtual rights and forms of the article to allow the editorial to disseminate the work in the manner which it deems appropriate. 

The editorial board reserves the right of amendments deemed necessary in the application of the rules of publication.