There isn’t a single formula for raising children well. After all, parenting isn’t an exact science. One of the unique things about being a parent is how we raise our children. Our parenting style means a set of styles we use to raise our kids. Ensuring that our parenting style encourages growth and health is important because the way we talk with our child and how we handle him will affect him for the longest time.
Researchers analyzed 4 parenting styles:
Each style of parenting differs greatly in at least four ways: the style of discipline, interaction, parental love and preferences.
Authoritative parents are balanced and caring, and the standards are strong and simple. Children who illustrate this style with parents tend to be extremely-disciplined and think for themselves. Children are thought to benefit the most from this style of parenting. The authoritative style of parenting is the right balance in which a child gets freedom within the limits.
Children raised through authoritative parenting are more likely to become well-behaved, self-reliant, academically successful, socially accepted and independently. They are less likely to report depression and anxiety and are less likely to engage in antisocial behavior like delinquency and drug use. Authoritative parents take a different, more moderate approach that emphasizes setting high standards, being nurturing and responsive and showing respect for children as independent, rational beings. The authoritative parent expects maturity and cooperation and offers children lots of support emotionally.
Children raised by authoritative parents are:
- Tend to be happy and content.
- Are independent and confident.
- Develop better social abilities.
- Interact with friends using competent social skills.
- Take part more in school activities.
- Have better mental health (less depression, anxiety, alcohol, and drug use)
- Exhibit less violent habits.
- Have great emotional regulation and self-control.
- Express warmth and cooperate with friends.
- Achieve higher academic achievement.
- Develop good self-esteem.
- Are well-adjusted.
Ways to Become an Authoritative Parent
Validate Your Child’s Emotions
Parents who are authoritative acknowledge their child’s feelings. They teach children to understand their feelings and how their feelings affect their behavior.
So when the next time a child is upset, say “It’s not a problem” or “Stop crying. There was no reason to cry.” and stop yourself from minimizing your child’s emotions. It’s a big deal for him. Support her feelings by saying, “I understand you are very angry now?”
Improve his behavior, not his feelings. The excitement is okay, but you can’t run around the grocery store crying. Or it’s OK to feel angry, as there will be bad consequences for hitting. Then, use your energy to educate him socially appropriate ways of addressing his feelings.
Listen to Your Child
Authoritarian parents believe children should be seen and not heard while authoritative parents welcome their child’s opinions. They allow them to share their ideas and listen to their concerns.
So if your child is telling you the same joke for the hundredth time or he’s sharing a lengthy story, be a good listener. Giving your child positive attention goes a long way without behavior problems. Warm and responsive parenting encourages secure attachments and protects kids from developing enterprising problems.
Turn Mistakes Into Learning Opportunities
Authoritative parents don’t humiliate kids for making mistakes. Instead, they help them figure out how to transform those mistakes into learning opportunities.
So when your child makes a mistake, explain why her behavior was an awful decision.
Say something like, “Taking things that aren’t yours aren’t right. It offends people and can cause people to think you are mean or that you’re not truthful.”
When your child harms someone, help her make amends. Request her that she loans her favorite toy to her sister after fighting. Or, help her apologize to someone she offended.
Set Clear Rules
Being authoritative means having clear household rules.
So instead of saying, “Stop watching the TV because I said so,” say, “Stop watching the TV because it’s bad for your eyes.”
When your kid starts to understand the basic security concerns, health risks, moral affairs and issues, or social purposes behind your directives, he’ll grasp a much better understanding of his life. He will also have a greater chance of following the rules when you are not there to enforce them.
Consider Your Child’s Feelings
Authoritative parenting means taking your child’s feelings into consideration. Make it known that you care about how your decisions affect everyone in the family while showing that you are in charge.
So if your child skips school, ask him what happened and why they made that choice but don’t tell him it’s OK to skip. Children lack the wisdom and experience to make major adult decisions. They feel safer when they know adults know best. Talking with kids about thoughts and feelings may strengthen attachment relationships.
Use Consequences To Convey Life Lessons
Authoritative parenting requires a positive approach rather than making kids go through punishment for their mistakes. They resist shaming kids and use no punishment. Sometimes, they don’t use guilt tactics to say stuff like, “I’m so upset in you.” They make a child understand why he made a poor choice, not that he is a horrible person.
Consequences are also reasonable in nature. Build experiences that make your child grow to perform well in the future. When he hurts his brother, try not to punish him. Rather, take liberty away from him. Then work on teaching him the proper management of anger.
Parents who avoid criticizing kids for their mistakes (e.g., “I’m disappointed in you”) may have kids who are more strong problem-solvers and better learners.
Self-Discipline Should Be Encouraged
Parents who are authoritative aren’t obsessed with controlling their child, they aim to teach and make a child learn how to have control over themselves.
So do not make your child calm down whenever he gets upset. Make him learn to stay cool. And do not nag him to do his household tasks. Enable him to feel more responsible for performing his own job.
Let Your Children Make Little But Important Choices
Authoritative parents prefer to give options rather than choices. This will empower children and prepares them for bigger decisions later on in life.
So ask your children, “Do you want corn or cauliflower?” or “Would you prefer to clean your room before dinner or after dinner?” The key point to note is to make sure they can cope with either decision.
Maintain a Positive And Healthy Relationship With Your Children
Authoritative parenting is not all about shouting orders and seeking obedience. Instead, it is about being a positive role model and teaching life skills to kids.
An authoritative approach to discipline may help prevent aggression and reduce peer issues in children. Children with warm, responsive parents are more likely to be helpful, kind, and popular. Children from authoritative homes are more adjusted with their parents and less influenced by their friends.
Authoritative parenting is about being a warm and caring parent. They show love and know that nurturing children is necessary.
Put aside a couple of minutes each and every day to give your kid your undivided focus and attention, including days when she does not behave well. Together, investing quality time can make your child feel valued and appreciated, which is crucial to making them feel positive in who they are and what they will do.
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