Volume 28, Issue 5
NEGATIVE EXPERIENCES IN CHILDHOOD, DOMINANT PARENTAL STYLE AND RESILIENCE IN INDIVIDUALS REPORTING PARANORMAL EXPERIENCES
There are relatively few studies examining the parental style and paranormal experiences/beliefs, therefore, the aim of this study is to measure the dominant parental style of those who have experienced paranormal events and their correlate with negative events in childhood and resilience. The Survey of Paranormal Experiences, the Questionnaire of Negative Experiences in Childhood and the Scale of Parental Styles and Perceived Parental Inconsistency were administered to a sample of 644 participants (28% males and 72% females) of general population. The results showed high frequency of experiences such as Sense of presence (58%), Premonitory dreams (56%), Telepathy (41%), Mystical experiences (40%), Apparitions (38%), and Out-of-Body experiences (25%). In addition, the results confirmed hypotheses which predict (H1) a positive and significant relationship will be found between negative experiences in childhood and the frequency of paranormal experiences in adult life; and (H2) people who report a higher frequency of paranormal experiences will tend to show a history of a more flexible parenting mode. In comparison with individuals who report a lower frequency of paranormal experiences, (H3) people who report a higher frequency of paranormal experiences are expected to be more resilient. One possible interpretation is that authoritary parents style are more permissive ones –greater openness and sensitivity to capture alternative realities in contrast to “rigid” parents style whose perspectives generate restrictions to capitalize on the unconventional experiences of their children. Traumatic events in childhood are not only the source for the emergence of other paranormal experiences but a permissive and negligent parental style helps to reinforce the way in which these negative experiences are processed cognitive and emotionally. Finally, a combination of negative experiences and Rigid parentalship showed that resilient adults –but whose childhood had been traumatic– tended to report more paranormal experiences compared to those who had not had traumatic childhoods.
Childhood trauma, Parental styles, Resilience, Paranormal Experiences/Beliefs.