Oct 31, 2017

Smarter Parenting

Are You a Helicopter Parent? It's Not Too Late to Change?
Drill Sergeant parents and Helicopter parents often swoop in and tell their children exactly what to do with every problem they encounter.  Sometimes they even intervene to remove all consequences from their child’s bad decisions.  This sends a message to the child that they believe the child is not capable of solving their own problems and further creates other problems:
  • It makes the child insecure.

  • It makes the child resentful.

 

Sometimes, it even goes so far as to create a child who feels like an honored guest in their own home and has an expectation that life will hand them everything.  They don’t know what to do when hard things come their way.
 
Parents who understand this will only step in when the problem is too big or dangerous for the child to solve.  This approach allows the following:
  • The child develops security in their ability to make decisions and solve problems.

  • The child develops respect for others.

  • The child learns from their mistakes and develops resilience and resourcefulness.

  • The child learns to think critically. 

The benefits far outweigh the angst that parents and the child feel.

 
The next time your child comes to you with a problem try the following:
  • Empathy – “Oh man, that’s gotta hurt!”

  • Hand the problem back. – “What do you think you are going to do?”

  • Offer some ideas. – “Would you like some ideas about how other kids have handled this kind of problem?”

  • Help them think through the ramifications. – “How do you think that might work out.”

  • Offer your support. – “Let me know what happens.  It will be interesting to see how this works out.”

I find great joy in seeing my child own and solve her own problems!  I know you will as well!