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Which One Is Your Parenting Style?

4 min read

Each parent has a different manner of raising his/her little one. Whether to give in to your child’s tantrum: chocolate first, then dinner? Or to let him cry? Or simply leave him alone? Or come to a compromise? These are very common dilemmas and each parent will choose different option in these situations. The parenting style is influenced by the socio-cultural background, family traditions, education, religion etc. A lot of parenting styles have been identified, such as helicopter, attachment, spiritual and toxic etc. But experts and studies have derived four basic styles of parenting: Authoritarian, Authoritative, Permissive and Uninvolved.

What Are The Components of Parenting Styles?

Diana Baumrind, a clinical and developmental psychologist extensively researched parenting behaviour and classified parenting styles as above. Parental responsiveness and Parental demandingness are the two elements that determine parenting style.

  1. Parental responsiveness: It is the extent to which the parents attend, support and respond to their children’s need (including emotional)
  2. Parental demandingness: The extent to which parents exert control over their child with regards to their expectations and discipline

A gist of parenting styles in above terms:

  1. Authoritarian: High in demandingness, low in responsiveness
  2. Authoritative: High in demandingness, high in responsiveness
  3. Permissive: Low in demandingness, high in responsiveness
  4. Uninvolved: Low in demandingness, low in responsiveness
Identify Your Parenting Style

Authoritarian-parenting

  1. Authoritarian parenting: These are the no-nonsense kind of parents. Their words are children’s command and invite punishment if not complied. They expect their child to follow them blindly and not question them. The parents are conservative and observe strict family rules. Threats and punishments are frequent so that the child abides the rules and behaves well.
    • Pros Of Authoritarian Parenting:
      • Very obedient, disciplined kids
      • Adapt very well to situations in control of authorities. They rarely break rules or play pranks
      • Excellent academic performance, appropriate social demeanor and emotional control
    • Cons Of Authoritarian Parenting:
      • Not very happy kids with low self-esteem
      • Just strive towards the goal, without any social competence
      • Since the parents do not indulge in explaining the rules or punishment to the child, he may never learn the logic behind these
      • Kids may be weary of discussing anything with the parents due to their critical nature
      • Easily give up on challenges and may exhibit aggression
  2. Authoritative parenting: The parents practicing authoritative parenting can be best visualized as a coconut – harder outside, softer inside. They establish rules and believe in disciplining the child. The boundaries are set and any impending punishment is mentioned if the limits are crossed. Although the punishment may not actually be imparted. They appear to be quite strict with discipline however can be flexible. This parenting style is believed to be the most successful in terms of raising academically and emotionally stable children.
    • Pros Of Authoritative Parenting:
      • The parents involve children in the discussion but it is clear that the parent’s words will be binding
      • Have a supportive rather than punitive approach
      • Guide children in resolving issues, so they feel secure and are on the right track
      • With parent’s support, child develops into a socially confident and goal-oriented individual
      • The thoughtful application of positive reinforcements in the form of praise or rewards are used to define desired behaviors
      • Since everything can be discussed and modified, there are less chances of arguments in the family
    • Cons Of Authoritative Parenting:
      • In the event of disagreement, the parent may take on a more authoritative role, thereby tarnishing the image of a friend
      • The child may become aggressive and overpower the parents to fulfil his wishes. This is because there is more room for argument and this might as well lead to logical crackdown!
  3. Permissive parenting: Also known as Indulgent/Non-traditional parenting. This type of parenting can be associated with “leniency”, where the parents pose more as friends than authority figures. They are quite laid-back when it comes to disciplining the child or confrontations. There are no regulations or boundaries for the child. This maybe out of guilt that they are unable to spend much time with the children. Therefore fulfilling every wish of the child is a way to make up for the work commitments etc.
    Permissive parenting

    • Pros Of Permissive Parenting
      • Children feel important and loved
      • Easy two-way communication between the parents and child – easily approachable parents
      • Increases the self-esteem of child
      • Child may feel free and confident in discussing his woes with you, particularly during troublesome teenage years
      • Strict rules and discipline are perceived as hindrance to child development
      • Children are treated as equals and involved in decision making process concerning the family
    • Cons Of Permissive Parenting
      • Passes on the message to the child that he can have everything he wants – the idea of having something according to the need is not implemented
      • Fulfilling every demand is going to wipe off the patience and self-control of the child
      • Higher instance of back talking to parents, sticking to tantrums, emotionally blackmailing the parents
      • Since children are raised with so much freedom, making own choices, setting up own schedules, they may find it difficult to adapt to situations which requires discipline. Particularly in hostels and places where you cannot have your way
      • Such children often turn out snobs, unable to share their stuff
      • These children often face difficult time in school and workplace
      • They can easily misuse the freedom given to them
      • With no set frame of rules, the child will always be testing his limits. And the parents will be worried as to whether what he is doing is correct or not?
  4. Uninvolved (neglectful) parenting: There are no rules and the kids are expected to grow up themselves. Parents may not have any expectations from the child or very low, if any. They are rarely bothered about child’s emotional needs. They may or may not be involved in school performance and rather remain detached.
    • Pros Of Uninvolved (neglectful) parenting
      • Children learn through their experiences
      • They become accustomed to facing problems alone and identifying solutions
      • Child grows up to be an independent individual

      Neglectful

    • Cons Of Uninvolved (neglectful) parenting
      • Low self-esteem
      • No goals
      • Impulsive, snappy attitude
      • Unable to tolerate authority – do as they will, because that’s how they have been raised
      • Children may feel unwanted, unloved and unguided
      • If basic emotional needs of the child such as attention and love is not provided, he may develop into a problem child, an arrogant teenager and further behavior problems

Often it’s not possible to simply stick up to one parenting style. We are prone to oscillate between the above styles as per the circumstances – adding or subtracting to your basic parenting skills. The key is to adopt positives from all styles to maintain a balance between discipline and love.

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