helicopter parenting sounds better than a bulldozer!

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-06-2009
helicopter parenting sounds better than a bulldozer!
12
Thu, 07-14-2011 - 5:04pm
I read The Atlantic Monthly article on perfect parenting, have you?
What do you think about these big machine names for our nuturing roles?
Do you have a better one?

Did / do you offer choices to your children?

Here is a snip where empty nester gets a mention:

“There’s a difference between being loved and being constantly monitored,” Dan Kindlon told me. And yet, he admitted, even he struggles. “I’m about to become an empty-nester,” he said, “and sometimes I feel like I’d burn my kids’ college applications just to have somebody to hang around with. We have less community nowadays—we’re more isolated as adults, more people are divorced—and we genuinely like spending time with our kids. We hope they’ll think of us as their best friends, which is different from parents who wanted their kids to appreciate them, but didn’t need them to be their pals. But many of us text with our kids several times a day, and would miss it if it didn’t happen. So instead of being peeved that they ask for help with the minutiae of their days, we encourage it.”

Long work hours don’t help. “If you’ve got 20 minutes a day to spend with your kid,” Kindlon asked, “would you rather make your kid mad at you by arguing over cleaning up his room, or play a game of Boggle together? We don’t set limits, because we want our kids to like us at every moment, even though it’s better for them if sometimes they can’t stand us.”

Kindlon also observed that because we tend to have fewer kids than past generations of parents did, each becomes more precious. So we demand more from them—more companionship, more achievement, more happiness. Which is where the line between selflessness (making our kids happy) and selfishness (making ourselves happy) becomes especially thin.

“We want our kids to be happy living the life we envision for them—the banker who’s happy, the surgeon who’s happy,” Barry Schwartz, the Swarthmore social scientist, told me, even though those professions “might not actually make them happy.” At least for parents of a certain demographic (and if you’re reading this article, you’re likely among them), “we’re not so happy if our kids work at Walmart but show up each day with a smile on their faces,” Schwartz says. “They’re happy, but we’re not. Even though we say what we want most for our kids is their happiness, and we’ll do everything we can to help them achieve that, it’s unclear where parental happiness ends and our children’s happiness begins.”

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-06-2009
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2006

That was an interesting article, and I suppose many parents do step in too quickly to resolve problems for their children to keep them happy.

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http://www.pnhp.org/news/2009/october/meet_the_new_health_.php

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQTBYQlQ7yM

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-06-2009
Fri, 07-15-2011 - 10:47am
Yeah wrongs wrong with children who adore their parents? Haha
Do you think it is because they end up in therapy because they experience amazing childhoods and are not ready to the leave the nest?
Parents, and I’m as guilty as anybody, have raised our kids during a time when everyone got trophies for just showing up and woo hoos for non-accomplishments. Do you think this contributes to why college students go off the charts in self confidence?
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999

Well I guess my kids won't end up in therapy because as a single parent I didn't have all that much time to devote to them and certainly their every whims weren't indulged.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2006

<>

We may be a bit guilty of that.

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http://www.pnhp.org/news/2009/october/meet_the_new_health_.php

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQTBYQlQ7yM

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997

I think part of this is due to the idea that "being happy" is the ultimate goal in life.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2006

My definition of "being happy" must be different than yours, because I think it is a major goal in life;

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http://www.pnhp.org/news/2009/october/meet_the_new_health_.php

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQTBYQlQ7yM

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997

This is what prompted my reaction:

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 07-19-2011 - 11:58am

This discussion reminds me of a cousin I have who's about 40--he did graduate from college but never really had a job that required use of his college education.

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999

<<>> That's if indeed he WANTS to live this way.

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