Perception of Guilty Feeling Transmitted from Parents: A Qualitative Research

Document Type : Original


1 Associate Professor, Department of counseling, Allameh Tabatabaei University, Tehran, Iran

2 Ph.D. Student in Counseling, Faculty of Educational Sciences and Psychology, University of Allameh Tabatabaei University, Tehran, Iran


Background: Transmitted guilt is a phenomenon that is observed in all family interactions about the roles and tasks defined in the family context and the communication dynamics of parent-child relationships, but its pervasive state causes maladaptive emotional and behavioral patterns. Objective: The purpose of the present study was to investigate children's perceptions of guilt transmitted from parents. Method: The present study was methodologically qualitative, using grounded theory and targeted and accessible sampling. The study population consisted of girls in the sixties in the winter of 1398 in Tehran. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews and used the grounded theory (GT) method to analyze the data. The analysis of the interview data was generally categorized into three axes: how to perceive the guilt transmitted from parents, the grounds for creating the guilt transmitted from parents, and the mechanisms for reducing the guilt transmitted from parents. Findings: The analysis of the interview data was generally categorized into three axes: how to perceive the guilt transmitted from parents, the grounds for creating the guilt transmitted from parents, and the mechanisms for reducing the guilt transmitted from parents. The results of open, axial, and selective coding showed that the perception of guilt includes annoying emotions, maladaptive cognitions, and ineffective action. Individual, familial, and contextual factors play a role in creating a feeling of guilt, and mechanisms to decrease feelings of guilt include insight, compensation, and cut-off. Conclusion: In addition to increasing the insight into the phenomenon of guilt transmitted from parents and the grounds of its creation, the results can be underlying for further research as well as the designing of educational and therapeutic programs to ease and improve parent-child relationships.


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