Types of Parenting Styles
My Parents Style
My parents parenting style was completely different from each other. My father chose not to be an active member in the family. I never asked him for permission to go or do anything. My father did not punish me nor did he expect anything from me. He chose to leave before I woke and return home after I was asleep. I would see him on weekends but he did not interact with my siblings or me. If I had to label his parenting style, I would categorize him as permissive as he had little to no demands and he did not discipline me. However, he holds traits of the authoritarian because there was little to no affection or communication.
My mother on the other hand demonstrates the authoritarian parenting style. She would often say that she dreamt of having the “Father Knows Best” children. She got the order right, but the kids are all wrong. Growing up, I learn that love is conditional. As long as I mow the lawn, do the laundries or some meaningless task, I am told that I am loved. My mother assures me that I am stupid and will fail at anything I try. Punishment means standing in the living room while you are hit with a wooden spoon or plastic spatula, many times without knowing why. My mother would ignore me for days or weeks with out an explanation of what I did. Forgiveness is misleading. I was told I was forgiven for whatever I had done only to have it thrown back at me in a hurtful, condemning manner. Communication as well as affection was nonexistent.
Four Styles of Parenting
- Authoritarian Parenting This parent is Stern in discipline and rules and limits need to be followed. It is clear what is expected of you and your role in the family. Affection is minimal and the parent expects respect in return. Th parent feels that explanations for their behavior is not necessary as the child s to do what they say without question.
- Authoritative Parenting Their disciplinary methods are supportive, rather than punitive.
The parent will set rules but unlike the authoritarian,are willing to include the child's opinion in the setting of them.If the child asks why a rule is set or why they are being punished, an explanation is given. Love and affection is shown and the child is supported.
- Permissive Parenting This parent is far less demanding and allow considerable self-regulation. They wish to avoid confrontation,therefore allowing the child to 'do what they please.' Parents may feel that by letting their child make the decisions for him/her self they are teaching them responsibility and somehow they will be "loved" or respected more, when in reality, the effect results in opposite consequences.
Some include Uninvolved Parenting as one of the main styles. Personally, I feel if you are an uninvolved parent, you are hardly a parent. But this is purely my opinion and therefore I will explain what it is.
- Uninvolved Parenting This parenting style exhibits a low level of control and a lack of responsiveness to the child.The child is a low priority to the parent and often left alone. The parent often gives the child the non-verbal message that they don't care by allowing them to do "whatever" and not involving the child in family activities. The uninvolved parenting style it's all about the needs of the parent, not the needs of the child.
The Broken Chain
As a mother, I try to use the authoritative approach. I choose this style because I fight the demons that haunt me from my childhood. I remember how my parents made me feel and I promised my daughter the day she was born that I would never make her feel that way.
I teach my daughter that love is not conditional. Love should not hurt and you should never have to earn it. I show my daughter love by spending quality time together, hugging, kissing and talking. “I love you” is expressed freely. I support and communicate openly with her, without judgment or harsh criticism. We make decisions together after discussing the pros and cons. I do not raise my hand or voice to her because I believe that discipline is a tool to teach your child, not hurt your child. Overall, I realize that I am the only one who can break the chain; and that is why I try to use the authoritative parenting style.
Treat your children well. They did not ask to be born. They didn't have that choice, but you have a choice. A choice to raise them with respect and love. With that, you will receive it as well.
The Effects of Your Parenting
The impact of my parents parenting style remains a daily battle for me. As a young girl, I often felt I was not good enough. My esteem was often low. I feared my mother and craved my fathers love. I feel the same way today. I feel as if I must buy others affection because I am not worthy of receiving it by just being me. I struggle to know that I am an able and worthy person, that I am not stupid and undeserving. I continue to let my mother control my emotions and my self-worth. I fight to live my life as a happy person.