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To Be or Not To Be? A Parent's Position On "Helicopter Parenting"

Updated on May 25, 2015

From the words of the great Plato.....“No man should bring children into the world who is unwilling to persevere to the end in their nature and education.”

And so, a typical scene that can be witnessed in parenting would like something like this..........

As a parent of a young son, I have paid close attention to the dialogue surrounding proper parenting methods. I feel a great responsibility for raising my son in the best manner and equipping him with attitudes, skills, and experiences that will lead him to be a well-rounded person. I look to other parents and listen to parenting conversations to improve upon myself so that I practice the healthiest strategies to help my child. But in my own practices, and after furthering my research on the subject, I realized that I had been practicing what many people refer to as “helicopter parenting”.

“Helicopter parenting” involves the general notion of parents who are always “hovering” overhead, attempting to protect and guide their children. The term often has a negative association as being one who “over-parents” and controls his or her children’s actions, in hopes of shielding a child from hardship, pain, or possible failure. Many theorists in modern parenting rhetoric stress that this method leads to a lack of independence in children, and does not give them the space to develop their own identity outside of the parent.

The term typically implies a sense of “going too far,” but I am on the side of those who believe that it is a sign of a truly involved parent. Research has not supported the idea that it is causing such a massive amount of harm. Children benefit from consistent guidance from experienced adults in order to navigate through our every-increasingly complicated world. It is a parent’s responsibility to be a consistent and readily-available teacher and confidant. Current claims that over-parenting is leading to problems in child development are causing some parents to practice an attitude of less involvement, which has far greater negative consequences to a child’s welfare.

We helicopter parents may interfere with funtime. We may cause tantrums and destroy otherwise good moments for the sake of teaching lessons and doing what is proper. Ask yourself, would the Queen of England approve? He, he, he....


Permissive parenting has been recognized for resulting in children with poor emotion regulation, rebellious and defiant attitudes, low persistence in challenging tasks, and antisocial behavior. Additionally. data provided by the Michigan State Department of Education states that students with actively involved parents had increased motivation, higher self-esteem, lower use of drugs and alcohol, and fewer instances of violent behavior, compared to those with less involved parents or strong authority figures. These are powerful indicators that parents should be aware of before they blindly accept notions which tell them that their child’s happiness and heath will increase if they become less involved.



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Create A Nurturing Environment

The "short-leash" theory is not such a taboo, scarey theory that should be shamed or scoffed at. "Short-leash" children are often more well-behaved and thoughtful members of society compared to their alternately-reared counterparts.

Most important of all........Enjoy parenting and learning and growing with your child. and embrace moments to share your knowledge and thoughts, while creating a nurturing and comfortable atmosphere for your little one to grow. Embrace a healthy balance in every way to best enable your child to be free from affected growth and understanding.


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    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 2 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      Yes, it's a difficult one - none of us want our kids to come to harm and it's easy to think you're being protective when maybe you should give them a bit of space, but I suppose it's just natural to want to protect them. Great Hub.