Friday, October 19th, 2012
If you are a helicopter parent, think you might be one, or have been recently called one by someone you know, tell me about it.
Do you “hover over” your child? Are you considered to be “over-involved” in your child’s life?
I’m curious and I want to explain why.
Recently I finished a 3 part series on trying to figure out if I was a helicopter parent. (I know now that I’m not.)
However, to come to that conclusion, I compared myself to extreme stereotypes of what I imagine(d) a helicopter parent to be.
While that may have been effective in helping me reach the conclusion of my self-analysis, it still leaves things quite blurry on what a real helicopter parent is actually like.
By gathering stories from readers, I want to be able to present a collective image of a true helicopter parent.
I want to hear which of your behaviors cause you to be labeled as one.
Allow me to give my grandiose stereotype of a helicopter parent so that my preconceived ideas can be proven wrong:
A true helicopter parent believes the “cry it method” is evil and therefore their child rarely sleeps in their own bed, up until the child’s preteen years. The child is given prescription drugs as early as preschool to help them with ADHD and/or depression, as the child never really learns to cope with their own emotions.
Years later, the child has trouble finding their classes in high school and even college, calling their parents for help. Similarly, the child is still completely dependent on their parents, well into their 20′s, for laundry and cooked meals.
Ultimately, the child never really learns to stand up for themselves or believe in themselves.
They never learn individuality, because their concept of it is based completely on how their parents perceive them.
By the time they reach adulthood, all the “babying” their parents have done has preserved them in a perpetual state of “what am I supposed to do?”
Now is your chance to enlighten me, as well as the rest of us, who don’t understand your parenting style. Now is your chance to defend your proud stance as a helicopter parent. Set the record straight by overwriting the stereotype I just shared.
Send me an email. Tweet me. Contact me on The Dadabase Facebook page.
All of those things are super easy to do, just by clicking on the appropriate icon on the right side of the screen, underneath “Follow Nick Shell.”
Or just simply leave a comment below.
Categories: Deep Thoughts, Growing Up, Must Read, Storytelling, The Dadabase | Tags: ADHD, children, depression, extreme parenting, helicopter parenting, parenting, parents, toddler
Sunday, July 29th, 2012
The creator of the TV show Dance Moms is working on a new reality show about Extreme Parenting, due to beam up (and possibly burn out) your plasma screens this fall.
Yes, it will be a train wreck. No, Thomas the Train will not be involved.
Of course, since we seem to love watching train wrecks, while downplaying them each as a “stupid guilty pleasure,” we fund and endorse these ridiculous reality TV shows that we are ashamed to admit we like.
This upcoming Extreme Parenting show will be featuring parents who endorse co-sleeping, elimination communication (no diapers or potty training), unschooling, and non-vaccinating.
Basically, I have a feeling the show will make a circus of participants of attachment parenting.
As I pointed out in How Gay-Friendly Ads Affect What You Buy Your Kids, we as a pop culture are easily engaged, offended by, and divided by extremes that affect other people’s lives, but often not our own.
“I don’t agree with your viewpoint” is often perceived as “I hate you.” So then polarizing groups form and they ridiculously boycott each other.
In my 2+ plus years so far of daddy blogging, I’ve accidently ran into a few (several dozen!) extreme parents who decorated my comments page like flair on an Applebee’s uniform in 1998.
Some extreme parents are mellow and non-preachy about their different parenting lifestyle.
Others are not.
I evidently have become a classic villain among intactivists and anti-Ferberizers (those who oppose the “cry it out” method for getting their child to sleep through the night.)
Just read the comments to these articles I’ve written and you’ll learn that if you put me in a room with a black light, the “666″ becomes visible on my forehead:
Is It Wrong To Let Your Baby Cry It Out?
Getting My Infant To Sleep Through The Night
Dadvice #5: How Is It Natural To Circumcise Your Son?
Dadvice #6: Is Circumcision Unnecessary And/Or Immoral?
Dadvice #7: A Skeptic’s Letter To Intactivists
Dadvice #8: Too Young To Medicate ADHD And Bipolar Disorder?
I don’t think anyone ever says, “I want to be an extreme parent.” But I bet a lot of extreme parents don’t even realize they are.
As for me, I make it one of my daily goals in life to not to be an extreme person, in general. I believe in the importance of being passionate about things you stand for, but not extreme.
But cyber-bullying, boycotting, and name-calling are not part of my moral belief system. Therefore, I won’t cyber-bully, boycott, or name-call those who do those things.
(Unless this technically counts right now. Oops.)
The irony, however, is this: We are all extreme parents to somebody out there.
I am an extreme parent for having my son circumcised and for teaching him to sleep through the night at 7 months old.
You can’t not be an extreme parent… because the true extreme parents out there already see you as one.