When it comes to parenting and parenting styles, everyone is unique. Different parents implement different methods, with different levels of success. However, just like in anything else humans do at large, there are plenty of similarities to be found among all. In this blog, we discuss is authoritative parenting bad?
That’s why a lot of experts have come up with different parenting styles. Among these styles is Authoritative Parenting. If you’ve followed the political side of the news, you might also be familiar with another similar-sounding term – authoritarian.
As you already know ‘authoritative’ and ‘authoritarian’ are far from the same. However, both are words used to describe different parenting styles. In our pursuit of answering ‘Is authoritative parenting bad?’, we first need to talk a short bit about authoritarian parenting.
Similar to authoritarianism – the political ideology, authoritarian parenting is a style of parenting characterized by a huge significance to the laws and boundaries that parents set.
There is no breaking the rules, and there is never any leeway for the children. Authoritarian parents require their children to be well-behaved, respectful and ‘law abiding’.
The opposite of this is Neglectful parenting. Where rules are essentially nonexistent, and children are given pretty much endless freedom. This style of parenting is dangerous, as most of the time it can be harmful for the children.
Be that in an immediate sense (physical injuries, acute health problems, and so on) or, by causing long lasting ramifications (lack of personality development, health issues that arise at an older age, and so on…)
By understanding these two styles, we now can find it easier to grasp authoritative parenting.
What is Authoritative Parenting?
Authoritative Parenting is the middle point between dictatorship and anarchy. Authoritative Parenting represents a particular style of parenting that has in itself strict rules and clearly distinguished boundaries, but at the same time said boundaries and rules aren’t absolute.
Authoritative Parenting leaves room for reasonable discussion. On top of that Authoritative parenting is characterized by supportive and understanding parents.
Here are two examples of Authoritative Parenting, and compression’s to other parenting styles.
Digital Play Time: Authoritative parenting means that your children have a specific amount of time that they can spend in front of the TV, cellphone, PC, console or what have you…
However, if there is a special occasion, then maybe the limit can be pushed a bit further.
On the other hand Authoritarian Parenting has set rules for how much screen time a child can have and that’s it. There is no understanding… Even if it happens to be their birthday.
And then Neglectful Parenting would be the complete opposite of that. There are no rules and screen time lasts as much as children deem fit on their own.
Diet: Authoritarian Parenting enables children to consume a healthy and diverse diet. This doesn’t mean that we can never have french fries or hamburgers. Every once in a while, even junk food can be part of the diet. As long as it is kept rare and far between.
Also, it is important to point out that such lenience shouldn’t be used as rewards.
Neglectful Parenting and Authoritarian Parenting here go down the other extremes. While the first never bothers to implement any specific diet, the second never bothers to allow any changes to the set diet.
Pros of Authoritative Parenting:
Authoritative Parenting is probably already sounding supreme to Neglectful Parenting or Authoritarian Parenting. But there is more, we have yet to count the pros of Authoritative Parenting.
Maturity: One of the main things that you will notice with children raised with Authoritative Parenting, is a mature sense of understanding life.
Most of the time these children understand that their actions have consequences, and that they themselves are in charge of their life.
This is a side effect of being asked for their opinion as children. Authoritative Parenting has allowed them to give their opinion for the rules they follow.
They understand the importance of rules, and also understand that they are to blame if they break those rules.
Builds Personality: Authoritative Parenting isn’t a style that shields children from everything. In fact, authoritative parents allow their children to fail. That is part of life, and they should learn that too.
Instead of protecting them by reality, authoritative parents are there to support and show compassion to the child after all is said and done.
This, mixed with all that was said above, allows people raised with Authoritative Parenting to develop amazing personalities.
Most of the time, these children grow up to be caring, kind, compassionate, while also being fearless in the face of failure. A truly charismatic set of characteristics.
Socially Capable: A great personality and a healthy dose of maturity, are the essential ingredients for social success. Yet that’s not all that Authoritative Parenting presents in this regard. As we already said, authoritative parents, communicate with their children and ask for their opinion.
Whether be it about rules, or about how they feel regarding a loss in their soccer practice…
By making the children think for themselves, since a young age, authoritative parenting helps children develop a subtle way of thinking on their own and having problem solving skills.
This is sublime in a social setting, but it is also perfect in an entrepreneurial setting.
Cons of Authoritative Parenting:
As with everything else, there are two sides to the medal. As we have counted the pros of Authoritative Parenting, we also should dip our toes in the cons.
Hard to implement: One of the main downfalls for Authoritative Parenting, is the difficulty of it. Authoritative Parenting isn’t something that you can practice during the weekend and then be done.
It is rather a large, long-lasting, accumulated way of living, that shows its rewards when you near the end.
Prone to Mistakes: It is very easy to try and be Authoritative only to end up being Authoritarian. Or trying to be more understanding, and end up being totally permissive.
It is the case more often than not, for parents to completely miss the sweet spot of Authoritative Parenting and go fully in the wrong direction…
So, Is Authoritative Parenting Bad?
Well the answer seems to not only be a resounding “NO!”, but I think we can go one step further. Authoritative Parenting is probably the best parenting style there is. First of all it has many pros.
We didn’t count all of them up there. There is the emotional side of Authoritative Parenting, that reaps many rewards for the parents and the child.
Then you have the cons, which as you saw, aren’t really cons for the child. They are cons because it is a challenging task for the parent.
It is probably safe to say that most parents wouldn’t mind putting in the extra effort or the extra work, if it means benefiting their children.
So, to answer our question: Authoritative Parenting isn’t bad at all. It is actually very good, and you should try and use it with your family too.