- Defining overprotective parents
- Examples of overprotective parents
- The line between safety and overprotection
- Safety vs Overprotection: How to Find the Balance
- Why do some parents become overprotective?
- Fear of the Unknown
- Lack of Trust
- How overprotection can impact children
- The Dangers of Overprotection
- How to Strike the Right Balance
- Ways to avoid becoming an overprotective parent
- What to do if you are already an overprotective parent
- Find a Balance Between Protection and Freedom
- Teach Them How to Handle Themselves in Different Situations
- Trust Your Children
Defining overprotective parents
There are a lot of different ways you can describe overprotective parents, and in this blog post, we will look at what defines an overprotective parent and give you some examples. We will provide you with some tips on establishing if they are too overprotective and how to help them be less protective of their children while keeping them safe.
The definition of an overprotective parent is a parent who worries about their children’s safety and well-being. This is often described as being a helicopter parent, lawnmower parenting or even tiger parenting. Overprotective parents often struggle to let their children experience life on their own two feet. They will try and control every single aspect of their children’s life.
Examples of overprotective parents
There are many examples of overprotective parents. Some common examples include
- Not allowing your child to walk to school by themselves
- Not letting your child play outside without supervision
- Not letting your child go on sleepovers or playdates
- Constantly checking in on your child when they’re at school or with friends
- Trying to control who your child hangs out with
- The list goes on!
The line between safety and overprotection
Keeping your child safe is your job as a parent, but at what point does safety become too overprotective? This is a very delicate balance and one that is different and varies from family to family.
Safety vs Overprotection: How to Find the Balance
How can you tell when you are keeping your child safe and being a good parent and when you are being an overprotective parent and holding them back? Here are a few things for you to consider:
Your child’s age and maturity level: A five-year-old child will need a lot of guidance and supervision compared to a teenager. As your children get older and hopefully more mature, they should be able to handle more independence and responsibility.
Trustworthy babysitters and caregivers: If you have a babysitter or someone watching your children who you don’t completely trust, understandably, you will want to stay close by as your instinct is to protect your children. But if you have a babysitter or caregiver you trust, then it’s ok to let them take the lead while you take a break and hopefully, you will be able to relax.
The activity: There are some activities your children may be doing that are a lot more dangerous than other activities. If your child is doing something that makes you feel uncomfortable, then fair enough, it is ok to step in and try and control the situation. However, if they are playing in the park or riding their bike, then there is no need to be a helicopter parent and hover about.
Your parenting style: Every parent has their very own unique style of parenting. Some parents are very laid back and tend to let their children find their own way in life. Letting them play and explore more than that of an overprotective parent. There is no right or wrong style of parenting. However, it would help if you found a nice balance between being laid back and relaxed and hovering around your children, trying to control everything they do.
Why do some parents become overprotective?
Too many parents are overprotective of their children. It’s always challenging to know what is best for your kids. Sometimes, when you’re trying so hard just getting them through life without any harm coming to them, it becomes difficult on both ends- the parent and themselves (in case something happens).
Here’s a look at some reasons why some parents become overprotective.
Fear of the Unknown
Some parents become overprotective because they’re afraid of the unknown. With bad things happening in this world, it’s understandable that a parent would want to keep their child safe and protected from harm. Still, by not letting them explore new experiences, you are doing them an injustice and setting up another obstacle for when those difficult times come around again later on in life.
Lack of Trust
Another reason some parents become overprotective is that they lack trust—both in their children and the world around them. If you don’t trust your children to make good decisions, they will never learn how to make good decisions themselves. If you don’t trust the people around you, you’re always on edge, which isn’t good for anyone. It’s important to find a balance between being protective and being trusting otherwise, you’re just going to end up creating an unhealthy dynamic.
Parenting is hard enough as it is—you don’t need to make it harder on yourself by becoming overprotective. Yes, it’s important to keep your children safe, but it’s also important to let them experience life. If you don’t trust your children or the people around you, then you’ll never be able to relax and enjoy being a parent. You need to try and find a balance between being protective and being trusting so that everyone can hopefully have a happy and healthy relationship.
How overprotection can impact children
Some people might think being overprotective of your children is good, but new research suggests otherwise. This can lead to increased anxiety and decreased resilience in children, which may cause them emotional distress as they grow up.
It’s natural for parents to want the best possible future generations, but there are dangers involved with being too protective!
The Dangers of Overprotection
A recent study published in the journal Child Development found that overprotective parenting can lead to increased anxiety and decreased resilience in children. The study, which followed nearly 500 children from kindergarten through fifth grade, found that children whose parents were overly protective were more likely to experience anxiety and depression symptoms than those whose parents struck a healthy balance between protection and independence.
Why is this the case? The researchers believe that it has to do with how overprotective parenting limits opportunities for mastery experiences—those small moments in which children try something new and succeed or fail on their own. These experiences are crucial for developing a sense of competence and self-efficacy, both of which are essential for managing anxiety and stress later in life.
How to Strike the Right Balance
So what’s the solution? According to the researchers, it’s all about finding the right balance between protection and independence. Here are a few tips for striking that balance
- Encourage your child to take healthy risks. This could mean anything from trying a new food to taking on a new challenge at school. The important thing is that your child can experience both success and failure in a safe environment.
- Resist the urge to do everything for your child. It may be tempting to always lend a helping hand, but it’s important to let your child struggle sometimes—it’s how they learn!
- Talk about emotions openly. Helping your child understand and manage their emotions is important to developing resilience. When they’re feeling upset, provide comfort and support while also encouraging them to express what they’re feeling.
- Model healthy coping strategies. Share how you manage those emotions with your child when you’re feeling anxious or stressed. This will help them understand how to cope with challenging situations.
Ways to avoid becoming an overprotective parent
If you are concerned that you may be an overprotective parent, then here are a few tips.
• It’s important to ask your children how they feel about the level of protection and if it is comfortable for them. Do you know what would be best in terms of safety? If their response was that they feel you are smothering them, then maybe back off a bit from smothering.
• Put yourself in your child’s shoes. Would you want to be treated the same way? If not, it is probably time to reassess your approach
• Try gradually giving your children more independence. Start small and see how they do, and if they’re able to handle the extra freedom and responsibility, you can slowly start to give them more.
• Hovering around your children like a helicopter parent will not help them learn and grow as individuals. Letting go of some control can allow for more independence, which will make all of you feel a whole lot better in the long run.
What to do if you are already an overprotective parent
Find a Balance Between Protection and Freedom
One of the most important things to do if you’re an overprotective parent is to find that balance between protection and freedom. Yes, we want our children safe from harm, but they need more than just being coddled through every step in life; especially when it comes down to decisions about what happens with them or how much input others should have into those choices (as well as figuring out who’s responsible). So find a way where both factors can coexist- let your kid experience everything while still teaching selflessness!
Teach Them How to Handle Themselves in Different Situations
Teaching your children how to handle themselves in different situations will help them stay safe. Teaching them the importance of staying calm and assessing a situation before taking action, as well as listening for that inner voice telling you everything’s ok – these skills are all essential so they can survive any possible danger or uncomfortable encounter!
Trust Your Children
Trust your children to learn how to be responsible for themselves. If you don’t trust them, they will never grow up into well-rounded adults who can take care of themselves and others around them without any help from anyone else. So letting go a little bit and trusting in our abilities is what makes this world so much more interesting than if we were always holding on too tight or trying hard not to make mistakes at all costs. You only live once, after all.