When you think about who you are as a parent and what your kids will remember about you, there’s a good chance that you want to consider the type of parenting style that you use. If we’re being honest most of us have times where we may cross over into different styles depending on the type of situation that we’re dealing with. You may even find that with different children in your family, that there are times to utilize each style and that they can work quite effectively as a combination effort.
Perhaps you’ve never even given much thought to what type of parenting style that you tend to favor, but it can be a great thing to pay attention to. If you want to be a better parent or even if you happen to be struggling in a given area, then having some insight into the different styles can be quite helpful. There are times when one may win out over another, and it’s up to you to decide what will work best to fit your needs and the specific situation.
So if you find that you are struggling with a recurring problem, if your kids are just not listening the way that they should, or if you are feeling frustrated with the way that your parenting efforts are going then it’s time for a change. Again more than likely you may favor one of these parenting styles the majority of the time, but you may find that a combination effort works best. Here are the different types of styles, and you can see how each one has some advantages and disadvantages—so create a formula that works best for you and for your kids.
In this style you set the rules and there are no exceptions to the fact that they must be followed. You are definitely a disciplinarian because you are there to ensure that your kids follow the set rules without exception. You don’t take any input from your children, but you are very clear on what they can and can’t do. They are punished if they don’t follow those rules and you don’t ever change the way things are done.
You are in control and you are there to ensure that everyone follows the rules without any regard for the situation or the personality. This may be necessary if you have a tough kid or a touchy situation, but in many instances it may lead to longer term self esteem issues for the children.
You set rules but you also take into consideration that there can be exceptions at times. You are in control, but you also take input from your kids into consideration. You are tough with discipline but have the ability to be lenient if the situation dictates. This can be a good style to adapt to if you find that your child is struggling with something—you create structure to help them but also allow their input and some exceptions sometimes.
Then you can ensure that your kids follow the rules, but you actually set them up for success. This can be an excellent parenting style as it ensures that your children respect rules, but yet they feel valued because you allow for their input as well.
This isn’t to be confused with dismissive parenting, whereby the parent is absent and almost never gets involved. Permissive parenting is the type of style where the parent is really laid back and lenient. They have very little structure and therefore their kids tend to discipline themselves or go to the other extreme where they run wild.
These parents may just have a much more laid back type of personality, or they may just be a bit more “hands off”. This may come out more as the child gets older or shows that they are more responsible in nature. It may just be the way that the parent is, and therefore it can draw criticism from other parents if they are so laid back that the child exhibits bad behavior.
As you can imagine a combination of each of these styles can be quite effective. You want to be there for your kids and provide structure, but not to the point where it can cause harm. If you can find that happy medium then you have struck parenting gold, and therefore the best parenting styles may be dictated by the child’s personality and what is going on at the time.
Featured image by Into Somerset