Problematic Internet use in Israeli-Arab adolescent males: Do parenting styles matter?



The current study explored the relationships between parenting styles and problematic internet use (PIU) in male adolescents from Israeli-Arab families. In the research literature, little is known about the role played by parenting in relation to children’s PIU in Arab societies. One hundred and eighty male adolescents whose age ranges from 12 to 16 (M = 13.92, SD = 1.42) reported their internet behavior and their parents’ parenting styles. Controlling for the participants’ age, family size, and grades, parenting styles explained 24% of the variance in PIU scores, with authoritarian parenting being the only significant unique predictor. A further analysis of covariance revealed that adolescents who perceived their parents as authoritative scored lower than their counterparts in PIU. Our findings suggest that while Israeli-Arab male adolescents might benefit from authoritative parenting at home, it is the parental authoritarian practices and behaviors per se that should be targeted as part of PIU intervention and prevention efforts.

Parenting styles; problematic internet use; Arabs; adolescents; authoritarian

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