Study Says Black Protestants and White Evangelicals Are the Only Christian Groups in America That Emphasize Passing on Their Faith to Children

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and amid reports of a growing youth mental health crisis, four-in-ten U.S. parents with children younger than 18 say they are extremely or very worried that their children might struggle with anxiety or depression at some point. In fact, mental health concerns top the list of parental worries, followed by 35% who are similarly concerned about their children being bullied, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. These items trump parents’ concerns about certain physical threats to their children, the dangers of drugs and alcohol, teen pregnancy and getting in trouble with the police.

By significant margins, mothers are more likely than fathers to worry about most of these things. There are also differences by income and by race and ethnicity, with lower-income and Hispanic parents generally more likely than other parents to worry about their children’s physical safety, teen pregnancy and problems with drugs and alcohol. Black and Hispanic parents are more likely than White and Asian parents to say they are extremely or very worried about their children getting shot or getting in trouble with the police.

(Differences in parental worries, approaches to parenting, and parents’ goals and aspirations are explored in more depth later in this report. The chapters focus on distinctions by genderrace and ethnicity, and income level.)

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