Why I WIll Never Be A Helicopter Parent

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

First- logistics. There are four children (soon to be five) and one of me. I simply cannot be hovering over every move.

Second- how are my kids going to learn independence and self-reliance if I am constantly hovering? Problem solving skills and creative thinking are learned skills and practice, makes perfect.

Of course I am not going to tell Peas to walk to school on her own, but I do encourage her to get her own water, etc. Small steps lead to larger ones.

This means, I let my kids make mistakes. I let them make messes. I let them skin their knees.

I help clean up, help them learn, comfort them, and move forward, but how can they learn if they don't make a few mistakes along the way? Obviously, if the learning curve for a particular mistake is to steep- I'll step in- like not letting kids play in a road or something, but for little things, they can learn by doing.

If and when they ever need me, I will be there. Because I love them I want them to be independent.

18 comments:

Eva Gallant said...

Your kids are soooo cute! Such blonde hair! I just stopped by from SITS to say hello; hope you find time to do the same.

Kavuli said...

Happy SITS Day!!! Your kids are gorgeous :)

April said...

Happy SITS Day to ya! You have such adorable children! Wishing you the best with the rest of your pregnancy!

Leslie said...

Happy SITS Day! Congratulations on the new little on its way! Some may say I hover too much over our little one. It can be hard to let go.

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

Hi Elizabeth,
Saw you featured on SITS today. Oh my gosh, your children are BEAUTIFUL! It's nice to meet you!!

The Blonde Duck said...

Happy SITS day!

Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

Happy SITS Day!

I agree... although I only have two children, as a single mom, I just can't hover... there's only one of me and I need my kids to help by being more independent because I have no help!

Kasey said...

Happy Sits Day! I agree with you, as parents we have to teach our kids that they are capable of doing things for themselves. It's kind of back fired on me though since my daughters response to just about anything is, "I do it myself!" I think we may have turned her into an overly confident toddler! LOL

Diane said...

I have two boys and have to force myself not to hover!

Happy SITS Day to you....Enjoy it! :)

Leanne@lifehappenswhen said...

It is a shocking concept in this day and age, but hovering = such a bad idea! You are spot on! Your family is adorable and I've enjoyed reading!

Allison said...

Sounds like me! I want my kid to handle their own things on their own. They need to learn, make mistakes and figure out their own likes and dislikes and everything else!

Christa aka The BabbyMama said...

As someone who follows the same basic parenting pattern - with just one! - I think it's the way to develop independence in kids. When they know you're there for them, they're okay when they mess up or make messes!

Amanda said...

It is refreshing to hear a parent decide to raise children this way. I work at a school where the majority of students have helicopter parents who do everything for their children. They are lacking problem solving skills, social skills, and cannot advocate for themselves. Teenagers are lacking these skills! It can be quite frustrating. Keep up the good fight!

Visiting from SITS.

Jacki said...

Never thought of the logistics of helicopter parenting when you have that many children. My mother was never a helicopter parent, but man she has turned into a helicopter grandmother. She nearly freaks when I let my son go up to the counter of a fast food joint by himself.

Charlotte said...

I think this is wonderful advice that every parent should listen to. We all made some mistakes along the way and I think they are what form us to be the independent, well-rounded individuals we become later on in life. Just my two cents anyway :)

Funsucker Extraordinaire said...

Totally agree. Children learn from making their own mistakes. Obviously, you wouldn't let them do anything inherantly dangerous. You would not believe the flack I took for sending my 7 year old daughter away to camp without me one summer. I knew I wasn't the only one who didn't think 7 was too young because the camp had a program for girls her age that was always full sooooo... Anyway, she had the most fun, came home in one piece and was more self-confident and self-reliant than ever! Best thing I ever did for her! Happy SITs day!

Ronni said...

AMEN!!!

My mom wasn't necessarily helicopter but she was VERY overprotective, and I think I'm still dealing with being "normal" as far as society's standards.

As a result, I want my son to have a lot more opportunity to enjoy life as I did... but I don't want to go too far, you know? It's a challenging balance!

Justine Duppong @ Life With Cheeseburgers said...

As a former university residence hall director, and a future school counselor--thank you for this post!! Children and young adults absolutely need to have support, but also be encouraged to discover their own strengths and abilities to get things done as well. :)

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