Different Parenting Styles You Should Know

Different parents with their own style of parenting- some parents command their kids, some plead with them, and some even agree to every of their desires, while some say no. But do you as a parent know exactly the type of parenting style you are using? Some parents even work with combination of different styles as demanded by the stage and age of their children. No matter the style adopted, you find yourself using a major parenting style that has been stated out by psychologists.

What exactly is Parenting Style?

Parenting styles are the techniques that parents employ in raising their children. Parenting styles can also be referred to as a combination of strategies and plan that parents use in raising their children. Parenting styles cover two crucial element of parenting- Parental Responsiveness and Parental Demandingness.

  • Parental Responsiveness: this refers to the level at which parents responds to the needs of their children. It ranges from not responding to their needs at all to allowing every bit of their urges and desires. In summary, it depicts how much you as a parent is willing to agree or disagree to the need of your child.

  • Parental Demandingness: this refers to the level by which parents are in control of their children’s behaviors. This can also be expressed from the two ends- some parents can be very demanding of their children, wanting them to meet their expectations at all times. While some other parents are not demanding at all.

These two elements are considered to be an important part of every parenting style, which depends on the balance between responsiveness and demandingness. For instance, a parent can be at home with the kids, and still be engaged in other activities, not giving them enough attention. This shows that parenting styles represent the level by which parents respond to the needs of their children, and also demand from them.

What are the Parenting Styles?

A psychologist named Diana Baumrind after her research in the early 1960s came up with three (3) different parenting styles- Authoritative, Authoritarian, and Permissive. Later in the 1980s, Maccoby and Martin made further research and came up with a fourth parenting style- Neglectful. We will look at the four (4) parenting styles and their impacts on kids:

1. Authoritative Parenting

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Mr. & Mrs. Uche have rules laid down for their son John, they support him and provide him with everything he needs. They consider his opinions and expect him to meet up with the rules and demands. If John behaves badly, they forgive him rather than punish him. These are the attributes that authoritative parents show. This style of parenting creates a good parent-child relationship and develops a good environment for the child to grow in.

Traits of Authoritative parents:

  • They have rules and consequences that come with breaking such rules.

  • Rather than ignoring their children, they consider their feeling, but still let them understand that the adults are in charge.

  • They plan out activities for their kids, stating time for study, play and sleep.

Impacts on Children:

  • They become confident, independent and emotionally strong.

  • They build self-esteem and excellent social skills.

  • They are always happy and contented with what they have.

2. Permissive Parenting

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This type of parenting is also known as the ‘indulgent’ type. Parents under this category are forbearing with their kids, they will allow them to do things their own way. Parents do not always set rules, and when they are, they don’t enforce them on them.

Traits of Permissive Parents:

  • Little or no rules are set, and the ones set are always broken so they can reply to the demands of their children.

  • They always attached gifts and benefits to tasks.

  • They are indulgent of their children’s behavior and won’t confront them when they do something wrong.

Impacts on Children:

  • They don’t know how to follow rules.

  • They feel defiant when their demands get challenged.

  • They also grow up to be independent- live life without relying on anyone.

3. Authoritarian Parenting 

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If as a parent you do not allow the opinion of your children, and you expect them to obey you because you say so, then you fall under this category. Parents under this category are very demanding, and they give little or no space for communication with their children.

Traits of Authoritarian Parents:

  • Rather than discussing with their children, they often result to punishment so as to get what they demand of their kids.

  • They set out strict rules for their children to follow.

  • They do not allow space for open communication, whatever they say must be done.

Impacts on Children:

  • They are obedient and follow rules.

  • They develop low self-esteem, and lack in the necessary social skills.

  • They tend to perform well academically, but do not know how to relate with people because they are shy.

4. Neglectful Parenting

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If you find yourself to be less demanding of your child and pay no attention to them, you fall under this category. Neglectful parents are also known as ‘Un-Involved’ parents, they give their children every other basic needs (food, clothes and shelter), but are uninterested in any other parts of their lives. This style is very damaging to the life of child, as they grow only to know reproach and neglect.

Traits of Neglectful Parents:

  • They do not provide the needs of their children.

  • They shut themselves away from whatever is happening in the life of the child.

  • They do not share any form of communication with their children.

Impacts on Children:

  • They have low self-esteem.

  • Due to the lack of attention, they get depressed.

  • They get themselves engaged in bad activities like smoking, alcoholism, and drug abuse.

  • They withdraw themselves from the world, and become socially awkward.

What Parenting Style should you use?

Most parents use one of the listed parenting styles, but rather than stick to one of the style, the combination of the four styles could be used. Each parenting style is used as the child grows and the situation demands it. An example is a parent might not need to use the Authoritarian style, but the child might at a stage in his/her life need it. You as a parent need to understand the right parenting style that brings out the best in your children.

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