There isn’t any magic formula to parenting. There are countless factors going into raising a kid with innumerable decisions that have to be made in trying to decide how to handle your children. One parenting style that I see more and more of in the modern age is the coddling “helicopter parent”. While the helicopter parent strategy seems fine on paper it can do a lot more harm to kids than what good it does, most kids with some degree of helicopter parents will likely have some disdain for their parents’ invading behaviors. Young people in these situations often have little to no privacy, they have no freedom to do things on their own, and their parents are constantly breathing down their necks through monitoring their location, their texts, and their activities. This overbearing style of parenting produces young adults with many issues in taking on independence and looking out for themselves overall, so how should parents be acting alternatively?

 

A GoodTherapy.org article puts it quite well in saying, “In order for teens to grow up, they need to have the opportunity to experience the freedom of making their own decisions (age appropriate) and the opportunity to learn from mistakes. When parents place a certain level of trust in their teen, the teen will be more likely to respect the parents as well as their rules.”  Parents should be overseeing their children, but as they move into becoming teenagers and becoming adults they need to have experiences that let them learn real lessons for themselves. They have to be allowed to make mistakes and learn from them. They have to get stung to learn how to avoid painful or stressful situations. The skills and knowledge that young people acquire during this time in their lives are lessons that they can use for their entire lives, and will come real handy during their transitions into adulthood. In order for young people to slowly become adults they have to at some point begin to be treated like one, if they are denied any real responsibility throughout their youth they will be dependent and frankly unable to care for themselves properly when the time comes.

 

A 2017 Business Insider article outlined some of the traits that the parents of successful kids have in common. The list includes things like giving your kids chores, teaching them social skills, setting high expectations, teaching grit, etc. It also includes things like higher socioeconomic statuses and attaining higher education levels, things that aren’t available to all parents, but the other items on the list are things that really do check out for having positive effects on children. There is no recipe for producing well mannered and confident kids, but there are definitely actions that can lead children in the right direction, and parents should be taking advantage of every such opportunity.  The fate of the next generation is greatly effected by the actions of the parents, and the world isn’t getting any friendlier, so parents really have to be on the top of their game. 

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Mae
Mae
March 6, 2018 5:26 pm

Hello Ed,
I really liked reading your post. I agree that the only way for children to grow up into successful young men and women is to let them make their own mistakes and learn from it themselves. My only doubt about this theory is that I believe some children have too much freedom. Many kids can be spoiled and grow up doing anything they want without repercussions. My question is how could you avoid this as a busy parent and little time for your kids?
Thanks you, and I hope to read more of your work soon,
Mae.

Allison
March 6, 2018 2:08 pm

Hi,
I really enjoyed reading this article most times we only hear parenting advice coming from Adults but shouldn’t we be learning how to parent with advice from children as well. I loved the line ” “In order for teens to grow up, they need to have the opportunity to experience the freedom of making their own decisions (age appropriate) and the opportunity to learn from mistakes. When parents place a certain level of trust in their teen, the teen will be more likely to respect the parents as well as their rules.” Parents should be overseeing their children, but as they move into becoming teenagers and becoming adults they need to have experiences that let them learn real lessons for themselves. They have to be allowed to make mistakes and learn from them.” I agree with this line not because I want to be a rebellious teen because I truly believe this is how you should grow up. This is how I was raised and I know 100% any time im faced with a bad situation all I think about is how sad my parents would be because of the trust they hold with me. That is what keeps me from partaking in things I shouldnt do. I don’t know that I would react that same way if my parents were constantly strict with me and had no trust with me.

Johan
March 5, 2018 7:58 pm

Ed,
I believe that you are correct in your stance on parenting young adults. I agree that parents should watch over their teenagers and let them make their own mistakes. I have witnessed the negative effects of bad parenting myself. The kids that haven’t been given the chances to make bad decisions and learn from them seem to be arrogant and lack empathy. I think that this article will help you further your research https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/beastly-behavior/201608/yes-overprotective-parenting-harms-kids

Ethan
March 5, 2018 7:54 pm

Dear Edward. Great post, I do believe that Helicopter parents can hurt the Childs growth mentally but we must take into consideration of how this prevents the child from physical harm? Helicopter parents ultimately want to keep there beloved child safe. With respect to the helicopter parents I do believe that there are certain teirs into helicopter parents, the spectrum of extreme to anxious are the 2 ends of the teir system. I suggest this from past personal experiences with “helicopter moms” so i cannot provide any supporting documents. good luck with your research

Octavio
March 5, 2018 4:36 pm

Dear Writer, as stated in your second paragraph ” “In order for teens to grow up, they need to have the opportunity to experience the freedom of making their own decisions (age appropriate) and the opportunity to learn from mistakes”. How would a parent go about if their young adults keeps making wrong decisions. Also you could’ve explained what the helicopter method of parenting is???but nun the less its a good and strong piece.

Abby
March 5, 2018 4:22 pm

Ed,
After reading your post it left me wondering where my family dynamic and others fits into your research. It’s amazing how much influence parents actions have on children and just how much they absorb. I never knew that not only can behaviors and skills affect development but also they way we react to those behaviors. In the article, https://www.livestrong.com/article/75282-parents-effect-child-behavior/, it discusses the affects of stress and how the way parents react to stress could directly correlate to children’s reactions to stress. I look forward to hearing more.

Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

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