Being a hands-on parent is essential for the healthy development of your child, emotional, and otherwise. But some parents, or most desi parents in face, can often take it too far and hinder their child’s development. There is a fine line between healthy parenting and helicopter parenting that should not be crossed.
What is helicopter parenting?
The most generic definition of helicopter parenting is parents being too controlling, over-protective, and extra invasive in their child’s life. This usually applies to children 8 and above. But parents can often turn into helicopter parents to young children as well.
Not allowing your child to play on his own, following him around, telling him what to do, how to play, who to play with, and not allowing him to do things on his own, are some typical signs of helicopter parenting.
How can I avoid it?
It’s perfectly natural to be constantly worried about your child. Most people are! And understandably so. Children are vulnerable and young. How can parents not worry?
Worrying isn’t the problem. It’s how you channel it. Here is what you can do:
- Keep an eye on him, but from a distance
In the playground, for example, allow your child to play on his own and interact with other kids there. Don’t control who your child interacts with and allow him some independence with playing. This is important for his motor skills, social skills, and other sorts of learning.
- Rationalize your anxieties
You are worried about his safety, but don’t let him miss out on fun just because you’re worried there is a small chance that things might go south. Just take necessary precautions, not unnecessary ones.
Remind yourself that children need to grow and you need to set boundaries.
- Don’t prevent failures, work through them
A lot of helicopter parenting happens because parents are afraid of their child failing. Remember that failing is part of life, and your child doesn’t have to be good at everything. Childhood is supposed to be a relaxed, fun time. Help your child remember that it’s okay to not be the best at something. And he can always try again if he wants to.