Confident Children - Avoid Overparenting
For many years underparenting was perhaps the biggest problem facing children.
Recently there has emerged another type of parenting that, whilst never as harmful as underparenting, can be detrimental to children's healthy development- that is, the trend by many of the current generation of parents to overparent their children.
Overparenting occurs when parents solve children's problems rather than give them the chance to overcome problems themselves. It occurs when parents allow children to avoid legitimately challenging situations so they won't be inconvenienced. It also occurs when too much control or too much order is imposed on children.
Overparenting is predominantly a mindset. It is a belief that children can't overcome difficulties themselves and they can't cope with discomfort or disappointment. It comes with increased affluence but it can occur in any socio-economic group. From my observation, it is more likely to occur in smaller rather than larger families or in families where a death has occurred or tragedy has been a visitor.
An overparented child is a protected, spoiled child. He or she often lacks real confidence and won't take many risks. An overprotected child avoids new situations and looks to hide behind his parents when difficulties or challenges arise.
An overparented child can be any age but often becomes more apparent in middle primary school when the challenges children meet start to multiply. The overparenting may have occurred in the early years but the results only become apparent during this stage.
Some children by their nature place more demands on their parents, which results in overparenting. They receive more attention, more material possessions and more spoiling than they need because they can so bloody-minded and so insistent that parents give in just for some peace and quiet.
Sometimes circumstances such as family breakdown or a change of circumstances can lead to overparenting or overprotection as a form of compensation for the inconvenience that has been caused. While a child's behaviour may lead to feelings of guilt overparenting in this manner doesn't do the child any favours in the long term.
How can a parent break from a pattern of overparenting? This is hard to do because overparenting can seem so normal. However if a child is so reliant on a parents that they think they can't cope without them then it is time to take some action.
Parental illness is one way to change overparenting, although it is not a recommended course of action. When a parent is incapacitated or sick for a lengthy period of time children generally have no choice but to fend for themselves in a whole range of ways. From my observation of families I am constantly amazed how children rise to a challenge when they have to.
Another way to kick the overparenting habit is to do so by stealth. Little by little parents need to pull back on the over-assistance that they provide children. They can start by insisting children walk to school (provided this is reasonable from the perspective of safety and their wellbeing), get themselves up each morning or other simple forms of self-help as required. When a new behaviour becomes the norm rather than the exception then it is best to look for another area to withdraw their assistance from.
Another way to defeat the overparenting habit it to give children ideas, tips and techniques to cope with their challenges rather than allow them to avoid or pull out of challenges. For instance, a child who wants to pull out of an after school class after three weeks because they haven't any friends may need some ideas about either how to make friends or make do without friends until the end of term.
It helps to develop a "Hang tough" attitude rather than a "Let's try something else when things get tough" attitude. Overparenting prevents children from developing a "Hang Tough" attitude.
From my experience those children who do best at school and beyond the school years are those who have parents whose first response is to teach and support rather than protect or compensate when social, physical or intellectual challenges occur. It also helps to have parents who show absolute, unwavering confidence in a child's ability to cope and fend for him or herself, yet be wise enough to know when children need their help and compassionate enough to lend a hand once in while.
It is hard to get the balance right between developing real independence and not placing too much responsibility on children. It is essential for all sorts of reasons that childhood be protected, even prolonged. But that doesn't mean that children be closeted, spoiled or get every material good they want. Effective parenting is a balancing act between the head and the heart, between providing opportunities for resourcefulness and showing compassion, and between being a supportive parent and a protective parent.
Michael Grose is The Parent Coach. For seventeen years he has been helping parents deal with the rigours of raising kids and survive!! For information about Michael's Parent Coaching programs or just some fine advice and ideas to help you raise confident kids and resilient teenagers visit http://www.parentingideas.com.au
Develop Your Childs Critical Thinking Skills
1. Encourage Questions.
Its OK For Your Child To Be Bored - In Fact, Its Recommended!
NY -- Strange as it may sound, bordom promotes happier, creative kids who are better problem solvers. When children use their own creativity with unstructured play, they find ways to amuse themselves -- even if it means simply daydreaming.
Raising Kids on a Budget
There are only two ways to get more money:1) Increase your income and 2) Decrease your outgo.B Buy what you need, not what you want.
Diana, Princess of Whales
Younger generations unfortunately will not understand how larger than life Diana really was and it would be difficult to describe. If you will read the book about her or go buy the audiotape you can play it for your children.
Responsible Fatherhood - A Unique And Irreplaceable Role!
Something happened the other day that made me feel uneasy. Yet I shouldn't have felt that way!My wife had left for work and I was hanging the washing out to dry.
Introduction to the Medications Used in the Treatment of Attention Deficit Disorder
There are several treatment options available to help improve the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Since there is no prescription medicine that can "cure" for ADHD, the various medical interventions seek to improve symptoms.
How Public Schools Coerce Parents Into Giving Mind-Altering Drugs To Their Children
Despite the potentially dangerous side-effects of Ritalin, public school authorities now pressure many parents to give Ritalin to their children so these kids won't "act up" in school.Naturally, most parents don't want to drug their children just because they are unruly, bored in class, or high-spirited.
Children and Mom and Paper
Memorabilia - Children can create enough artwork for an entire gallery in a few short weeks. The key here is choices; establish a particular place-e.
"I'M OVERWHELMED" -- 5 Tips On How Parents Can Take Control Of Their Lives
Are you feeling overwhelmed being a parent? Do you want to feel more relaxed and empowered raising your child? Working parents, stay-at-home parents, visiting parents - it doesn't matter which one you are because these days almost every parent feels overwhelmed by their daily day. Parents every day experience anxiety, stress and despondency because they feel as if they are losing control of their natural balance.
Life Lessons in a Glass of Beer
It was blisteringly hot last Saturday. As I took that first sip of a cold quality beer I knew it was sure to ease my thirst.
Choosing Wooden Toys For Children
Wooden toys are one of the best alternatives for the huge number of toys made of plastic and other synthetic materials that you can find in all toy stores.In addition, most children's wooden toys are handcrafted.
Picky Eater Kid Nutritional Guidelines
Although many children are picky eaters at some stage in their lives, the experts say not to worry. Unless you are feeding him or her chips and cookies three times each day, these children will most likely meet their weekly nutritional quotas.
Confident Kids : Why Some Parents Should Carry a Health Warning
As a hypnotherapist, I am acutely aware of the power of words. A few well-chosen words can induce hypnosis and help my clients with a wide range of problems.
Top Five Ways To Stay In Touch With Your Child
Once your little boy/girl goes off to school, you may find that your "special talks" occur less frequently..
The ADHD Parents Guide: Questions for the School
Here is something that you might want to keep if you are thinking about changing your child's school next fall or if you are planning to have your child tested by the school in the near future. Let me say this, if you are planning to have your child tested by your district, do not put off doing the paperwork.
Top 20+ Reasons to Pay your Kid an Allowance
1. They can make mistakes under your guidance2.
Why have children? DINCs, This is For You!
First there were Yuppies (Young Urban Professionals). Then came the Boomers, the Busters, the Boomlets, and Generation X.
Childrens Discipline: How To Resolve Divorce Parenting Differences?
Did you know that inconsistency on matters of discipline gives double messages, produces anxiety and can be very confusing to your children? Children need to know where they stand in their behaviors. It is therefore critical for parents to resolve their differences in matters of children's discipline.
Moms - Get More Energy Now
Let's be honest! When it comes to parenting, men expect their wives or partners to do the lion's share.There are signs that we're moving toward a more enlightened age in which ALL parents play their part.
A New Dad To Be? Deer in the headlights?
Ok. So you're a dad to be.
|home | site map|