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The Four Parenting Styles

By Hanif Khaki

The following article offers some insight to those involved in the wonderful world known as Parenting.

There are just as many parenting styles as there are a number of parents. Experts believe the parenting styles fall into 4 different and identifiable styles: authoritarian, indulgent, authoritative, and uninvolved.

Let's examine this more closely. The first parenting style is that of the authoritarian parent. These parents are like army commanders. They prefer to issue commands and orders to their children and fully expect their children to carry out their orders without questioning them. Authoritarians do not welcome nor appreciate any feedback from their children. They live by set and defined rules in a structured environment.. These children as we now know, are generally considered to have an unhappy nature about them. Boys generally exhibit hostile behaviour when dealing with frustration, whereas girls tend to give up easily when faced with difficult situations. Both the boys and girls however, tend to perform better in school due to their disciplined upbringing.

The second parenting style is the indulgent parent. These parents are generally lenient. They allow a variety of behaviours by their children that some would describe as immature. Essentially, they let the children look after themselves and avoid confronting them at all costs. Indulgent parents may also be described as non-directive or democratic. Non-directive parents are known to parent by default, that is, by taking virtually no action in parenting of their children. Democratic parents, though lenient, are more aware and show a committment to engage with their children.

The third parenting style is that of the authoritative parent. These parents are both demanding and responsive at the same time. Authoritative parents while expecting their their children to behave in a certain manner, don't impose their authority and welcome a certain amount of questioning. They demonstrate a combination of assertiveness coupled with the ability to respond to their children's feedback. These children appear to be more lively and have a happier disposition about them. Their self-confidence is more developed they seem to be more sure of their abilities. These children also show better emotional control and are more adept in their social skills. Gender stereotypes are also less of an issue with authoritative parents, as they tend to be more open minded in their outlook towards their children's behaviour, i.e. boys playing with dolls and girls playing with tools.

Lastly, we look at the parenting style known as "uninvolved parenting". As the name suggests, these parents are simply uninvolved. They are neither demanding nor responsive of their children and they are not interested in any feedback from them. These parents are the most likely to be irresponsible and more often neglect their children.

We hope you found the above information insightful and will seek out the many more resources available on this topic online.


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