BLOOMINGTON, Ind., Oct. 2 (UPI) -- Children with high-conflict parents are more likely to think that aggressive responses are good ways to handle social conflicts, U.S. researchers said.
The study, published in the Journal of Family Psychology, by researchers at Indiana University said children who grow up in aggressive households may learn to process social information differently than their peers who grow up in non-aggressive environments.
"This partly explains why they are more likely as young adults to have conflict in their own romantic relationships," study co-author John Bates Indiana University said in a statement.
Unlocking the developmental link between growing up in an aggressive or violent household and becoming the perpetrator of such behavior could prove useful for stopping the cycle of violence, Bates said.
Parents and children were recruited from Nashville and Knoxville, Tenn., and Bloomington, Ind., when the children were age 5, when they and their parents were interviewed -- beginning in 1987. At ages 13 and 16, the teens were presented with hypothetical social situations and asked to express their perceptions and reactions.
From ages 18 to 21, the offspring reported on the amount of aggressive behavior in their romantic relationships. The researchers continue to track participants.