Saturday, February 6, 2010

Parenting Styles

There are three parenting styles that most parents fit into. The first is Authoritarian where the parents always try to be in control and exert their control on the children. These parents set strict rules to try to keep order, and they usually do this without much expression of warmth and affection. The second is Permissive where parents give up most control to their children. They do not set clear boundaries or expectations for their children's behavior and tend to accept in a warm and loving way, however the child behaves. The third and probably most effective style is Authoritative. Authoritative parents help their children learn to be responsible for themselves and to think about the consequences of their behavior. Parents do this by providing clear, reasonable expectations for their children and explanations for why they expect their children to behave in a particular manner. They are also supportive and warm in the ways they go about teaching and guiding their children.

Research on children's development shows that the most positive outcomes for children occur when parents use authoritative styles. Children with permissive parents tend to be aggressive and act out, while children with authoritarian parents tend to be compliant and submissive and have low self-esteem. No parenting style will work unless you build a loving and caring relationship with your child.

After learning about the impact of parenting styles on child development, I wondered why all parents simply don't utilize an authoritative parenting style. After all, this parenting style is the most likely to produce happy, confident and capable children.

I guess a lot of a parent's style depends on what and how they want their children to learn. It also includes culture, personality, family size, parental background, socioeconomic status, educational level and religion, & I think for the most part parents are going to be somewhere in between parenting styles since both parents came from different families in the first place!

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