Researchers are finding that economic insecurity affects children reared in either low-income or higher-income families, but how parents help children prepare for the challenge differs based on their economic and education status.
According to a recent study from Pew Research Center, nearly 9 out of 10 people consider themselves middle class, no matter their income or social standing. More people are relating with middle-class lifestyle because they associate that with economic instability.
How this can affect children is something researchers are learning more about is because more families are reared in an environment of job insecurity.
"Insecurity parenting," often happens within families with higher job insecurity and who want to prepare their children for potential economic difficulty, according to recent research.
Allison Pugh, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Virginia, interviewed 80 parents as part of research for a book on job insecurity and families.
"Where we stand in America's starkly unequal social landscape shapes our view of the kind of world our children will face, and what will help them in the future," Pugh wrote of her findings, for the New Republic.
Though most people in today's world expect job insecurity, the views and outcomes are often different between those with more education and those with less. Those with more education are less likely to lose their jobs but are also less likely to take a pay cut when they lose a job and find another.
Both groups want their children to grow up flexible but in different ways, Pugh's research showed. While more affluent parents shared they wanted their children to be able to handle many different kinds of environments and pressure from the work world, while flexibility for low-income parents is "a kind of armor children can don against imminent disaster."
More people, especially in recent years, are experiencing job insecurity, with many believing that, although they are middle class, they are still economically insecure.
Pew's study also found that 67 percent of people believe the job situation in the U.S. has recovered at least somewhat, and that more people think that household incomes have recovered as opposed to two years ago.
"A perspective that was once characterized by comfort and optimism has increasingly been overlaid with stress and anxiety," The New York Times wrote on the study.
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