As a parent, it’s pretty common to wonder whether you’re raising your kids the “right” way–and no wonder, because there are so many different ways to parent your children! According to psychology, there are four main parenting styles. Below, we’ll briefly explain each of these parenting styles, as well as their effects on children.
Authoritative parents expect a lot out of their kids, but they also spend plenty of time nurturing them and supporting them. Authoritative parents let their kids contribute to big decisions, and although they have strict rules, they focus on creating a positive relationship with their children. Experts agree that the authoritative parenting style is the best when it comes to raising kids who will become responsible adults with effective communication skills.
Authoritarian parents are extremely strict and have a tendency to disregard their children’s feelings or not to take them into consideration. Rather than disciplining their kids, authoritarian parents often punish them. Although this type of parenting can produce very obedient children, they tend to have issues expressing their thoughts and feelings as adults. Sadly, they can also develop low self-esteem or even become hostile and aggressive as they grow up.
Permissive parents often struggle to tell their children no, and they may strive to have more of a friendship than a parent-child relationship with their kids. Overall, permissive parents are extremely lenient; they may set rules, but they very rarely enforce them. Kids who grow up with permissive parents have a higher risk of struggling in school, and they also tend to have more behavioural problems. If you have a hard time telling your kids no, BetterHelp is a wonderful resource that offers plenty of information about various psychology topics, including parenting.
Uninvolved parents don’t show much interest in their children’s lives. On a typical day, they may not even know where their child is, who they are with, or what they are doing. Generally, the uninvolved parenting style comes with the worst outcomes for children. It’s very common for kids raised by uninvolved parents to have low self-esteem, poor performance in school, frequent behaviour problems, and deep-seated unhappiness.
Most parents use a combination of the four parenting styles, depending on the situation at hand. As much as possible, strive to be an authoritative parent! Set clear rules and boundaries, but be sure to explain to your children why you have them. This will set them up for success not only in childhood, but also in adulthood and the rest of their lives!