The World of Pregnancy

What Parental Style Will You Approach?

All parents incorporate both love and limits in their parental style. There`s a balance between them, which determine a specific parental style.  Only the democratic education style has both love, strong points and inherent weaknesses in it, and it`s attribute to the important parental figures of our lives. These characters are usually our parents.

Parental Style

Parents who use their love as a parental, essential style (permissive parents) consider it to be more important than limits. They also use attachment and the connection with their child to teach them what is good and what is bad. They spend a lot of time with their children, communicate, negotiate and explain to them. Their value consist of “building their children`s trust” or “make them feel important.

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Parents who have limits as the base of their approached style (authoritarian parents) consider them to be more essential than love (relationship). They use external control to teach them what is good or bad, and they are quick in acting in a problem of discipline. Therefore, children are usually quick in reactions and they rarely negotiate with their parents. The value consists in “learning what respect is” and “providing structure.”

What Are Parental Styles?

Parental styles are defined as a “manner in which parents express their beliefs about how to be better or worst parents.” All parents want to be good parents and avoid what they think would do a bad parent. They adopt styles learned from their parents, because they don`t know how else to behave and they feel this is the way they need to behave to be good parents.

Permissive Style

Parental control is very poor; therefore, the child receives full freedom, without clearly established limits, rules or responsibilities. Parents who adopt this parental style have a close relationship with their child, permanently showing their affection towards him. They don`t refuse his desires and don`t forbid his behaviors, which normally would need to be repaired. In such cases, parents are inconsistent (e.g. in one day the bedtime hour is 21.00, in another day is 23.00).

The child is used to negotiate the parent`s decisions and he constantly shows his discontent with them. Children raised by parents who adopt a permissive style are frequently characterized as “spoiled.” Parents confused the aggressiveness of their child with his affirmation (the popular reaction, “he has personality”) and the child learns to manipulate his parents. As adults, they`ll have problems in gaining autonomy and will experience emotional issues. Some children may remain dependent even during adulthood.

Careless Style

This style involves low levels of love and limits. In this case, parents consider as being inadequate to meet the children`s necessities. Sometimes it`s known as the “indifferent parental style,” due to lack of emotional involvement and control over the child. Parents and children in a family of this type are often engaged in vicious circles of interaction. An example of this type is the one that follows:

  • The parents tries to the child`s behavior through ineffective ways. For example, a parents may shout at the child to gather his toys or may threaten that he`ll put them to the garbage, if they aren`t gathered immediately.
  • As a response, the child ignores, protests or cries to his parents.
  • The parent stops to shout or threaten his child, and comes out of the situation. This action strengthens exactly the same thing that the parent tries to stop it, doing exactly what the child wants – to be left alone.
  • The child as, therefore, adopted a measure of control against the parent, because he assisted to the “withdrawal” scene from the parent`s side.
  • The conflict generates, therefore, parents push the stake higher and start to threaten and shout in a more serious manner (even physical abuse).
  • The child accepts in the end his parents` request of gathering his toys and strengthens the abusive behavior of this parents (parents feel the need to become angry or abusive in order to make the child submit). Or the child continues to refuse to cooperate, protesting even more, ignoring his parents and running away from home.
  • Parents give up or punish their child in a total frustration.

What is unique in the vicious circle is that this child also has a role to play in the interaction. Therefore, the child makes changes in his behavior to prevent the abusive reaction of his parents (gathers his toys). Parents often believe that by making their child to submit, no matter the methods used, the final result is justified.

Authoritative Style

The characteristics of authoritative parents are common for each of us. Still, although when you forbidden your child to go out to the club, for instance, you may think you want his best, when rather this may be interpreted as too much severity on your part. The way of how to be a parent cannot be strictly interpreted by definitions, but rather depending on the situation in which the parent manifests. You cannot say that a parent of a 12-year child is too severe if he doesn`t let him in the club, when this is a very suitable label for the parent of a 17 – 18-year child. Therefore, we need to give importance to the situation, before categorizing not only a parent, but any kind of person, depending on his reactions.

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The authoritative parent is characterized through an education that involves respect, order, discipline over the people that is afraid of; in this case, the authoritative parent. This is a follower of the law, “because that`s what it takes,” following a very strict pattern and avoiding as much as possible to get out of the pattern. This one asks the child to obey any rule imposed, without bringing explanations and without the possibility of being discussed.

One of the words that characterizes an authoritative parent is the answer to the question “Why?”, asked by his child: “Because I said so!” The parent doesn`t see why he needs to give an explanation to the child for what he asks and, generally, has a distant and detached attitude from him.

The authoritative parent tries to limit creativity, initiative and autonomy of a teenager, which often leads to interfamilial conflict, the adolescent being in the period when he tries to win his independence.

Democratic Style

The democratic style is based on democratic principles, such as “equality” or “trust.” It`s a balanced style, which combines parental styles and puts accent on the child`s rights. Usually, there`s a set of rules required for all the members of the family, so that the area of responsibility be broadened at family level. The parent who adopts this style is open to the child`s opinions and encourages his creativity, but at the same time puts accent on respecting the rules.

Unlike the authoritative stile, it`s logically argued and every rule is explained. This way, the child accepts the rules and completes the tasks in an effective manner. The need for security is covered, but at the same time the parent shows his trust in the child`s abilities and encourages him in taking decisions, teaching this way to become independent. As he becomes older, due to independence he`s given, the child will his own strengths, he`ll know to listen to other people`s opinions and consider them, respect the people around him, accept observations and different opinions and express his point of view freely. The ability of becoming aware of his own abilities will help him choose a job that suits him and fulfill his goals.

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A disadvantage of this style consist of the fact that a child raised this way will find it hard to adapt to an authoritative parental style that he may encounter in the day-to-day life (e.g. army, groups of friends, job, etc).

It`s generally accepted the fact that the democratic parental style presents compared to the rest of parental style when it comes to the further development of the child.

Protective Style

You can easily recognize a parent who is too protective, especially due to his apparently unjustified precautions and life ideology (“Not everything that flies can be eaten!”). A lot of times considered an ideal when it comes to parenting, the protective style is in a constant attention to the child, making from maternity and paternity a real job, to which parents dedicate themselves totally.

For the protective parent only the family is a safe place for his child, everything that belongs to the outside environment being a potential risk. That`s why, the first thing that the child will learn from such a parent will be to be cautious.

Protection is often exaggerated, parents being constantly stressed about “what could happen to their child.” You can recognize such a parent through victimization, when the child grows up and tends to “fly away” from the parent`s nest, through the agitation and tension that he feels when the teenager goes for a walk with his friends, through the popular expression “I`ve told you so!” or “How many times did I tell you to …?”.

Which is the Most Balanced Parental Style?

Put in front of the disadvantages and consequences of parental styles, parents might be distracted in making the correct decision. However, the best parental style is the democratic one in which the motto is “We are all equal!”

Having roots in the permissive style, the democratic style is characterized by respect for the child`s rights, however, without missing certain rules of behavior. The parent is protective, he offers security to the child, but without exceeding the limit of rational or not respecting the child`s needs or desires.

Of course, there are disadvantages here as well, but by comparison with other parental styles, they are very small. The child may adapt rather hard to a authoritative style, like school or job is, discussing the “orders” received by the professors or bosses, after the democratic model. Still the advantages as the inter-rational respect taught from childhood and freedom of speech of one`s opinions hinder immediately the disadvantages. In the end, a child raised after the democratic style will manage to get rid of all the issues involving adaptation.

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