Hover and Out: Are You a Helicopter Parent?

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As parents, it almost always feels like “constant worrying” is part of our job description. It gets tiring for us… but it also gets tiring for our kids who have to constantly fight for their “freedom” to play with abandon in the playground otherwise known to us as “germs haven” or “death trap disguised as fun.” Or to try a sport that could potentially lead to scraped elbows and knees. Or to actually do anything with potential risks—real or imagined.

Our fear of the unknown—or the known consequences—has paralyzed us and our kids.

We all mean well. We always mean well. But the constant worrying, or the helicopter parenting, has long-lasting effects on our kids. As Julie Lythcott-Haims, university dean and book author, puts it, the trend “was having a profound impact on students, many of whom were experiencing unnecessary stress, difficulty managing their lives and, in some cases, an inability to function at university at all.” She likewise asks, “Why did parenting change from preparing our kids for life to protecting them from life, which means they’re not prepared to live life on their own?”

Yellowbrick has created a perfect illustration of the effects of helicopter parenting:


While nobody can really tell you how to care for and raise your child (like we always say, it takes a village, but that village leader is YOU), we do think reminders like these make us more aware of our decisions and judgement… and help our children reach their fullest potential.

What are your thoughts on this topic? Sound off in the Comments!

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