It’s a bird, it’s a plane…no, it’s a helicopter parent!!

helicopter parentingBy Elizabeth Wine

In today’s world where media and culture tend to warn us of perceived doom and gloom, parents have had the tendency to become very overprotective. Yes, there is value to keeping your child safe, but what about the perils of keeping a child TOO safe?

For example, if you never wanted your child to do laundry because you were afraid they would ruin their clothes, what happens when they get to college and don’t know how to do their own laundry?

Or, if you live in a big city and never let your child ride the subway alone, how will they cope when they have to ride it to work or college every day?

Perhaps, you are terrified to let your child play on a playground because they might get hurt. How will they learn about safe risks?

I think as with all things, parenting is about finding a balance. Instead of being a helicopter parent and never letting them make a mistake, consider being a supportive parent. Just as movies have their lead and support characters, your child is the lead in their life and you are a supporting character. Consider yourself a wise character that gives advice to this main character, who is inevitably going to make some mistakes! That is how characters learn and grow and become all the wiser.

If we do everything for children, we are doing them a disservice, by not allowing them to make mistakes. As humans, it is part of the journey that will mold them into the grown-ups they will become.

I am not saying being a hands-off parent and give your children total free rein, but consider the cost of being a helicopter parent. Helicopters can’t keep flying forever!

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