Helicopter Parents Need to Take it Down a Notch

Helicopter parents are becoming increasingly popular in today's society, but is it really the best route to take? Experts have found that helicopter parenting is actually extremely negative, and can affect your child's image of self-worth.

Helicopter parents are those ones you'll often see with their kids on a leash, or something. Sure it's practical. But it's not a great look for either party involved. Here are some of the consequences that can happen if you helicopter parent your kids.

1. Lack of Basic Life Skills

If you do everything for your child, how will they ever learn? Children who experience this style of parenting are less likely to develop the skills necessary to be on their own, due mainly to the fact they've always had someone to do it for them. This includes basic chores, cooking, and shopping for themselves. If you can't make a grilled cheese sandwich without supervision by the time you hit age 12, you're gonna have some issues later in life.

2. Enhanced Anxiety

Helicopter parenting can lead to depression, over anxiety, panic syndrome, and isolation tendencies. Children who are brought up in this environment often develop a sense of fear that can be crippling. They can start to feel like everything around them is something to be worried about, and that everyone else in the world is considered "dangerous" for doing the things they were always told were unsafe. Should we be taking candy from strangers? No. But we also shouldn't be afraid to buy candy from the corner store for fear of someone having injected crystal meth into it.

3. A Sense of Entitlement, Rebellious Tendencies

Kids who are over-protected can often develop a sense of entitlement because they are so used to having everything done for them. They are brought up being told that they are the most important person and should be treated as such (this is also known as Only Child Syndrome.) However, kids who are raised by helicopter parents are more likely to rebel, often feeling resentful for being kept away from things they want to do. The rebellion could be as small as eating a lot of junk food they were never allowed to have, to mixing in with the wrong crowds at school. You can spin your helicopter blades as hard as you can, but that's not going to take the "420 4eva" tramp stamp off Jenny's back.

4. Low Self-Esteem

Helicopter parenting can destroy the basic concept of a family. When parents continually do things for their children, without presenting them the opportunity to do it themselves, it can lead to distrust between family members. It's almost like saying to the kid, "Oh, we hear what you're saying. We just think you're wrong and incapable of doing this yourself." It's why selfies are so important right now. Let people celebrate when they feel good. Don't knock them down for trying to boost themselves up. It's also why so man so many young adults refuse to call to make their own appointments. Dentist appointments? I thought those just showed up on the calendar every 6 months. You actually have to book those?!

5. Ill-Prepared for Crisis and Emergencies

If parents are the ones making all the decisions for their kids, how do they expect them to cope when the parents aren't around? Kids raised by helicopter parents have under-developed coping skills required for managing emergencies, frustrations, anger, disappointment and failure. Studies show that children who are brought up under this parenting style are likely to face serious problems in life when it comes to these situations. If you can't learn to laugh at your own failure, it's going to be a rough ride for you. Kids should know how to handle the disappointment of not getting the Cocoa Puffs they want before they have to handle the disappointment of living off ramen and tears while in university.

All parents are trying to do what's best for their kids. But at some point, shouldn't we let them discover life on their own? I mean, don't let them stick a knife in the toaster, but don't stop them from trying to do that cool new trick on their skateboard. There needs to be a level of trust and respect between both parties. They may be your kids, but it's their life. Let them live it.

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