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Do parents and their styles of parenting affect their children?  Or are children born hardwired and no matter what the parents do the child will turn out the same?  These are some of the questions asked by researchers several years ago.  Famous theories from Piaget and Erikson came from people asking these questions.  Through the years researchers have found that both the parents’ parenting and the children’s temperament affect how the child develops and grows.  This article is focused on the styles of parenting and how they affect children’s growth and development.

Researchers have combined and categorized parenting styles and have come up with four main styles.  These styles are; Uninvolved/Neglecting, Indulgent/Permissive, Authoritarian, and Authoritative.

Characteristics of Uninvolved/Neglecting Parenting Style

Why are these parents neglectful?

These parents often have other pressures and stresses in life.  Sometimes the cause is because of poverty or health problems.  They don’t have the energy to put forth an effort to care and pay attention to their children. 

Affects on:

Younger children

Older children

Adolescents

These problems could also magnify tremendously leading to drug and alcohol abuse as well as huge drops in achievement.


Characteristics of Indulgent/Permissive Parenting Style

Why are these parents permissive?

These parents may have low self-esteem or no confidence and want their children to love them.  Another reason may be that they had parents that were very strict and abusive and they want to be the opposite.  They may not know how to discipline or may be lazy.  Maybe they didn’t have things when they were young.  Perhaps they are wealthy or feel guilty about something, such as a divorce. 

Affects on:

Preschoolers

Older girls

Older boys

Adolescents

“Discipline is probably one of the most important elements in which a mother and a father can lead and guide and direct their children...Setting limits to what a child can do means to that child that you love him and respect him.  If you permit the child to do all the things he would like to do without any limits, that means to him that you do not care much about him.”
–President Spencer W. Kimball (Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 341)


Characteristics of Authoritarian Parenting Style

Why are these parents Authoritarian?

These parents feel that they know what’s best for their children.  This style of parenting doesn’t require patience and it’s very easy.  They may have adopted this parenting style from their parents; this was how they were brought up. 

Affects on:

Preschoolers

Older girls

Older boys

Adolescents

“There is a need for discipline with families.  But discipline with severity and with cruelty, inevitably leads not to correction, but to resentment and bitterness.  It cures nothing and only aggravates the problem.”

– President Gordon B. Hinckley (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley, p. 418)


Characteristics of Authoritative Parenting Style

Affects on:

Preschoolers

Older girls

Older boys

Adolescents

“Use no lash and no violence, but approach them with reason, with persuasion and love unfeigned.”

–President Joseph F. Smith (Gospel Doctrine, p. 316)


Note: This information is from notes taken during a Parenting class taken in 2006 as well as from my own personal and thoughts and experiences.



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Baby Quotes
When you're drawing up your first list of life's miracles, you might place near the top the first moment your baby smiles at you.
-- Bob Greene