Internalizing and externalizing correlates of parental overprotection as measured by the EMBU: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Marthe de Roo*, René Veenstra, Tina Kretschmer

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

Onderzoeksoutputpeer review

7 Citaten (Scopus)
88 Downloads (Pure)


Aspects of parenting including overprotection explain individual differences in child adjustment. This review and meta-analysis summarizes studies on parental overprotection and internalizing and externalizing problems. To ensure that findings could be compared as systematically as possible, the focus was on studies that used the overprotection scale of the Egna Minnen Beträffande Uppfostran (“Memories of my Parents’ Upbringing”) (EMBU) questionnaire, a popular instrument to measure parental overprotection. In total, we extracted 176 effects from 29 studies. A modified version of the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale was used to perform quality assessments for the included studies. Parental overprotection was associated positively with offspring internalizing and externalizing problems, with overall estimates ranging from r =.14 to.18. Moderator analyses suggested that effects of maternal were larger than effects of paternal overprotection. Other factors that moderated the strength of the association between overprotection and maladjustment included whether outcomes were self-reported or parent-reported, the design was cross-sectional or longitudinal, and publication year. Cultural context, age at exposure, and child sex did not explain differences between effect sizes. Most findings were based on cross-sectional studies and therefore do not constitute proof of causal relations. Many studies were of less-than-satisfactory quality regarding representativeness of the sample, descriptions of the data collection, and statistical analyses. There is a clear need for well-powered longitudinal studies to strengthen inferences about associations between parental overprotection and internalizing and externalizing problems.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)962-983
Aantal pagina's22
TijdschriftSocial Development
Nummer van het tijdschrift4
Vroegere onlinedatum15-feb.-2022
StatusPublished - nov.-2022

Citeer dit