Mom, here are 18 Blogs on Being a Helicopter Parent!

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helicopterparentHow do you know where the line is between being an involved, caring parent and a helicopter parent?

A helicopter parent (also called a cosseting parent or simply a cosseter) is a parent who pays extremely close attention to a child’s or children’s experiences and problems, particularly at educational institutions. The term helicopter parent was originally coined by Foster Cline and Jim Fay. Helicopter parents are so named because, like helicopters, they hover overhead.

The term “helicopter parents” is a pejorative expression for parents that has been widely used in the media.

The metaphor appeared as early as 1969 in the bestselling book Between Parent & Teenager by Dr. Haim Ginott, which mentions a teen who complains: “Mother hovers over me like a helicopter…”

It gained wide currency when American college administrators began using it in the early 2000’s as the Millennial Generation began reaching college age. Their baby-boomer parents in turn earned notoriety for practices such as calling their children each morning to wake them up for class and complaining to their professors about grades the children had received. Summer camp officials have also reported similar behavior from parents.

The rise of the cell phone is often blamed for the explosion of helicopter parenting — University of Georgia professor Richard Mullendore called it “the world’s longest umbilical cord“. Some parents, for their part, point to rising college tuitions, saying they are just protecting their investment or acting like any other consumer.

While you may find yourself heavily involved in your child’s life early on, attending school events, helping in the classroom and chaperoning field trips, at a certain point you’ll likely find that your child wants – and even needs – for you to be less involved, so that he is able to grow, make his own mistakes and learn from them.

These 18 blog entries explore helicopter parenting and the affect it has on children, and can help you decide if it’s a parenting tactic you want to employ or not.

Confidence

confidence be youThere’s a difference between being an involved parent and one that is overprotective.

If you find yourself constantly stepping in every time your child faces a problem, you risk your child never learning how to resolve conflicts or make decisions on his own.

When a child feels that he is not trusted to make a mistake or a decision, it can cause him to lack self-confidence, which can be detrimental to his emotional well-being.

To learn more about how being a helicopter parent can affect a child’s confidence, check out these six blog entries.

Anxiety

anxiety-word-sphere-on-white-backgroundAnxiety medication is on the rise for children who have been raised by helicopter parents, which is likely because someone has made all of the child’s decisions for him throughout his life. This can lead to uncertainty and stress regarding decision-making once that child is out on his own.

To learn more about why these children suffer from anxiety, read these six blog posts.     

Career

When a teen graduates from high school he should be able to research job opportunities, create a resume, interview for a position and land a job on his own.  Just being able to have the confidence to answer questions on the fly is a big part of getting a job in a difficult job market.  Children with helicopter parents tend to lack these essential skills, which can end up costing them a job.

These six blogs entries go into further detail about why teens need to be allowed to make their own decisions without the help of a helicopter parent.

Submission thanks to Maureen Denard

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