According to a new government-funded study of 18,924 teenagers, "strong familial attachment" is the best deterrent. Apparently, that doesn't mean that the family closely monitors them or imposes rules and regulations. It means instead that the teen feels that the family understands him or her. How does this happen? According to Todd Frankle of the University of California, Los Angeles, a lot is accomplished by the simple act of paying attention.
Attending religious services also predicates lower incidents of youth violence.
And the final recommended deterrent?
Frankle's article in Adolescent and Family Heath magazine cites the amount of fun a family has together as a good indication of the strength of lasting family bonds.
Yet again, a federal study proves what we've always suspected: The family that prays together and plays together, well, if they don't stay together, at least they're less likely to beat anybody up.