According to Olweus (1993), Parenting styles play a significant role in the dynamics of bullying. Boys coming out of families with an external locus of control were more likely to exhibit bullying behavior. This outcome is attributed to lack of family warmth, physical violence, conflict between parents, divorce, psychiatric illness, alcoholism/drug addiction and lack of monitoring the child’s activities outside the school environment (Fspelage, Bosworth, Simon, 2000).
European and American studies on bullying reflect parallel findings. A recent American study on children between 5 and 7 years concluded, “Intervention programs aimed at reducing bullying should extend their focus beyond schools to include local communities and families” (13ou’es, et al, 2009). A 1991 Cambridge study conducted by Farrington and Hawkins supports the findings of Olweus (Denmark study) and Kokkinos (Greek stud›) stating, ‘Inconsistent discipline toward the child was characteristic of boys who become delinquent.
Parental nagging and empty threats of punishment were also found to perpetuate undesirable behavior among children (Patterson. Reid, & Dishion, 1992)” (Kokkinos, 2007). It is important to note that alone the same line of thought, victims of bullying trial also experience the same type of parental upbringing, which can lead to “feelings of helplessness, anxiety and depression” (Kokkinos, 2007). It is possible that the external locus of control parenting style can create bullies or victims and that an internal locus of control parenting style will reap children with high self-esteem, positive social behavior, and resiliency.