The researchers carry out 120 interviews in Germany and in Turkey asking parents about their experiences and beliefs related to parenting and child development. The following passage is an excerpt from an interview with a 29-year-old father with Turkish background in Germany.
I: And how about your mother? How was it with her? You said she had taken over most of the parenting?
B: Yes, we were four boys, born one after the other, more or less, with one and a half or two years difference. What mattered to her? Well, I have only good memories, she always was a very caring mother, explained many things, did many things together with us, but also was a very strict mother. Sure, with four boys at the age of three, five and seven romping about at home, it was necessary to keep up a certain strictness. Yes, it was really like that, that she – we were allowed to dig in the mud and she didn't say things like – "Oh, don't get dirty" or anything like that. She just let us go on and then put us all into the bathtub later, and that was all. Well, that is what she always said to the other parents and still keeps on saying today, 'All you need to do is to keep cool and simply let the kids be kids.' And that is what she still tells me, too, saying 'Listen, this is a kid that you are bringing up, not a soldier, do not be so hard with her, just let her do her thing, even if she breaks things, knocks them over, this is what happens.'
Selim Karasu, 29, father with Turkish background in Germany
When asked about his memories of his own mother and his upbringing the interviewee, a father with Turkish background, describes how he and his brothers felt about the way they were raised by their mother. It becomes evident that he regards her way of parenting as a balance of care and strictness. Although his mother took great care to ensure the proper 'functioning' of the family life, she also made sure to allow her children sufficient room for self-reliant development. Her parenting belief is also reflected in the recommendations she currently gives her son.
The interview passage illustrates the way in which parenting beliefs and developmental theories are reflected and discussed intrafamilially and intergenerationally.