Study: Helicopter Parents Doing More Harm Than Good

There are a lot of parents these days who just won’t let their kids do anything for themselves, and while these helicopter parents maythinkthey’re showing their kids how much they love them, a new study suggests they could be ruining them for the future. 

A new study out of Stanford suggests parents who do too much for their kids could wind up with children with behavioral issues. The study spent two and a half hours observing 102 children, ages four to six, as well as their primary caregivers, with the children given various tasks to see how they handled them. 

If the kids were handling the tasks themselves, and then the parents got involved, asking questions, correcting them, etc, especially in the case of emotional tasks, the kids wound up having more problems and behavioral issues. If the kids weren’t really enaged in the task and the parent was over-engaged, children didn’t have the same issues.

  • “[Too] much direct engagement can come at a cost to kids’ abilities to control their own attention, behavior and emotions,” Stanford Graduate School of Education associate professor and lead authorJelena Obradović,“When parents let kids take the lead in their interactions, children practice self-regulation skills and build independence.” She notes there is nothing wrong with parents engaging their children, but adds they should “try to find opportunities to let [kids] take the lead.”

Source:New York Post

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