Families, communities, and nations are strengthened by good parents. In this day and age where more and more couples are delaying parenthood or rejecting it all together, there is a clear call for better parenting skills. Social scientists have discovered that certain parenting skills bring out the best in children, while certain other skills bring out the worst. In fact, they have put all parents into four categories: authoritarian, permissive, uninvolved, and authoritative.
The authoritarian parents use coercion to convince children to obey, and there are many different types of coercion. Authoritarian parents sometimes use emotional and psychological controls, such as manipulation, shaming, mocking, or withdrawal of love. They can sometimes use verbal controls, such as yelling or criticizing. They can also use physical controls, such as spanking or forcing. Authoritarian parenting has been linked to anti-social behavior, withdrawal from society, and delinquent behaviors in children and teens.
The permissive parent overindulges children or neglects to care for them. They consider their children to be equal with adults in terms of rights but not in responsibilities. They tolerate bad behavior and allow children to set their own parameters for such things as bedtime or use of electronics. Children from such families tend to disrespect authority figures and have more difficulty dealing with frustration. The children tend to be socially well-adjusted but do less well academically. They also use drugs and alcohol at higher rates and more likely to be sexually active. Permissive parents neglect their God-given responsibility to teach their children.
The uninvolved or disengaged parent is one that fails to do any type of parenting. They are just not there to help their children.
The authoritative parent does the best type of parenting. They establish an environment where children and teens feel safe and connected. They establish reasonable rules and set consistent limits for behavior. They help their children learn to regulate themselves. Children from this type of family adjust better to school, less likely to get involved in drugs, alcohol, or sexual problems, and more capable of using moral reasoning. Authoritative parents make emotional connections with their children by loving them. They teach them self-regulation by having family rules with limits, and by allowing them to make choices appropriate for their ages. In other words, authoritative parents help their children to become well-adjusted and productive adults who ready to take their place in the world.
Studies show that authoritative parenting is the best type of parenting. The rising generation deserves to be reared in homes where they are loved and cared for as well as taught and prepared. Good parenting skills will strengthen family, community, and nation.