What sort of parent are you?
Most of us when referring to our own parents would describe them as strict or easy going but over recent years new parenting styles have begun to emerge and parenting has become a bit of a minefield and depending who you talk to you either feel you are doing a brilliant job or are the worst parent out there!
Here are the top 5 parenting techniques currently doing the rounds, which one are you?
This style of parenting tends to follow how you where bought up, the things that you felt your own parents did well or badly influence your decisions on what you do. You feel what is right for your child and family rather than follow the pack and what the ‘experts’ say is the right thing to do. If, for example, you always went to Cornwall for a week at Easter and this was a happy memory of your childhood you are much more likely to carry on that tradition than consider doing something different.
Parents who support the theory of attachment parenting tend to be more emotionally involved with their offspring. They always make themselves emotionally available to their child and believe that this bond makes a child more secure, more compassionate and calmer. The child is often carried closely, and they are usually breastfed until they are much older than the average child. Attachment parenting usually involves home schooling, co sleeping and positive discipline.
The phrase ‘helicopter parent’ was coined in 1990 by child development researchers Foster Cline and Jim Fay and was used to describe parents who constantly interfered with their children’s lives and development, they ‘protected’ them from hurting themselves by not allowing them to climb the slide on their own or run ahead or play out doors without an adult in constant supervision and as the child grew they would micro manage their homework or projects never allowing the child to fail or make a bad decision. Obviously, we all want to protect or children from harm, but this form of parenting tends to smoother the child’s independence and can backfire later in life when they are young adults and struggle to make decisions and are often still very reliant on their parents.
How many of us have said ‘because I say so’ or ‘my house, my rules’? Authoritative parenting is a parenting style characterized by high responsiveness and high demands. Authoritative parents are responsive to the child’s emotional needs while having high standards. They set limits and are very consistent in enforcing boundaries. However, research has shown that this form of parenting tends to produce the best all round child. Expectations are high for the child to achieve, behave, follow the rules but the child knows where they are and understands the boundaries. The parents are loving and nurturing and understand that the child needs to become independent whilst setting rules and expectations authoritative parents use reasoning and allow give-and-take discussions. Authoritative parenting should not be confused with Authoritarian parenting which tends to be more neglectful and colder.
Permissive parents tend to be very loving but do little to set boundaries or encourage discipline, they often have more of a ‘friendship’ with their children than a parent / child relationship and are dismissive of immature or irresponsible behaviour citing ‘children will be children’ rather than explain what appropriate behaviour might be. Permissive parents are often overindulgent towards their children, they are often inconsistent in their parenting style and are not adverse to resorting to bribery to get a child to do what is required of them. Expectations of achievement are often lower with permissive parenting which can lead to children under achieving as parents are happy to just let them get on with it and do as much or as little as they want to.