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Here's compelling new evidence that hovering parents need to find a landing pad... and fast: Researchers at Keene State College in New Hampshire found that college freshman raised by "helicopter parents" were more anxious, less open to new things, and less likely to be ready to leave the nest.
How do you know if you're a helicopter parent?
Envision yourself dropping your sweet child off at college and then take this quiz:
· Would you contact your child's school to help them solve a school-related issue?
· Would you stay the night in town after dropping your child off at college -- just to make sure they were adjusted?
· If you didn't hear from your child for two days, would you contact him or her to check in?
If you answered yes to any of those questions, you just might be a helicopter parent, at least according to Keene State researchers. They posed questions similar to these to 300 incoming freshman. They found that about 13 percent of girls and five percent of boys reported that their parents had a tendency to hover. Those students were also more likely to report being anxious, self-conscious, impulsive, and less likely to try new things when compared to their "free range" peers.
This study is small and only proves a correlation between the idea of helicopter parenting and anxious children, but it seems to support the idea that kids who are allowed freedom to take risks and make mistakes while they are young are better equipped to handle early adulthood. I'm not a card-carrying helicopter parent, but I'll admit that I hear the whir of the rotors every now and then, and it gives me something to think about.
Do you think helicopter parenting has a negative affect on kids? Chime in below!
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