Purpose: To study the determinants of current parenting styles in Japan.
Methods: Fathers (n = 312) and mothers (n = 333) of children aged between 0 and 10 attending a paediatric clinic were
evaluated with regards to the following: parental attitudes rated by spouses using the Parental Bonding Instrument, current
dysphoric mood assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, life time history of Major Depressive Episode
(MDE), and perceived parenting styles when the parents themselves were children.
Results: Path models showed that current parenting styles were predicted by parents perception of maternal rearing during
childhood. Moreover, in mothers only, they were predicted by the manner in which the women were raised by their
fathers. This prediction was indirect, occurring via lifetime history of MDE and current dysphoric mood.
Conclusion: This study suggests that the way in which parents themselves were raised was no less important than how
they currently felt in determining how they were raising their child. Current dysphoric mood or lifetime history of MDE
mediated such effects only among mothers.