Your child is unique and so should your parenting style be. The child rearing formula has no one size fits all and your approach has to be instinctive and in tune with your child’s needs. There have been many discussions in many forums regarding which is the best parenting style that you can adopt.
Situation- The child has homework to do and the parent has come back tired from a long day in office.
Authoritarian parent- “Do your own work, don’t bother me. You better do it well too!”
Permissive parent- “Ok, I will do it after I serve dinner. You go watch the football game”.
Neglectful parent- “Oh! Go away, I really don’t care”.
Authoritative parent- “Why don’t you start doing the homework, I will help you a little later.”
The four major parenting styles
There are many studies that help to broadly identify the four broad styles that parents can apply to their parenting approach. They should be flexible and at best a combination of various styles. As a parent you tend to know your child best. The styles may overlap as the situation demands.
- The authoritarian style of parenting is perhaps out dated today although many parents do resort to it at times. The parents demand high levels of discipline and blind obedience. The instance of stern discipline and punishments to force high standards from the hild is common. The parent tends to be unresponsive to the child’s needs and emotions. They are not nurturers and the child often hears words like” because I said so!’ this style often ends up in a bad way, with rebellious and secretive children who are insecure and have poor social skills.
They can be poor at academics and hence be bullied in school. The low self-esteem and confidence levels may create behavioural and in extreme cases mental health issues. Very few parents employ this style in the modern world.
- The hands off or permissive parenting style is the exact opposite of the authoritarian style. The parents are permissive and allow their child anything. The parents are indulgent and never enforce rules. There is a general reluctance to say NO!
This style has its drawbacks as you might end up with spoilt kids who cannot follow rules and are often hell raisers in school. As their behaviour is unchecked, they might have inflated egos and no self-control. These children too have relationship issues and have problems with social interactions.
- Neglectful parents are also rare but not impossible to find. These parents often seem indifferent to their child’s needs and feelings. They often are victims of post-partum depression or other issues that create a mind-set of uncaring attitude.
The children of such parents are often impulsive and cannot handle their emotions well. They are prone to facing issues with addiction and delinquency in adolescence. Some children may even be severely depressed or suicidal.
- Authoritative parenting or democratic parenting has probably showed the best outcomes. The parents often demand high standards from their children but are warm and caring. They actually listen to their kids and are responsive to their emotional needs. They set rules and boundaries according to the needs and capabilities of the child. These parents are supportive and value independence in their children.
The children raised by authoritative parents are often high achievers and well adjusted. They have
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