Whether you like to admit it or not, you and your spouse each have a parenting style. You may have a similar style or you may differ. Whatever the case may be, it’s helpful to know each other’s approach to parenting as this will help you to better understand each other as well as make decisions together.
When parents are not aligned in their parenting style, this gives your children the chance to take advantage of your differences. It also ends up in unclear rules or a lack of consistency in your home. And, it’s okay if the two of you don’t have identical parenting styles, but it’s not okay to disagree and argue in the presence of your child(ren). Instead, discuss the situation together and come to an agreement – and then share your decision with your child.
So, what is your parenting style? There are four:
1- Authoritarian Parenting:
This is the old school approach to parenting where strict rules are set in place and the expectation is that your child(ren) will follow… because I said so! With this style, parents have high demands but low responsiveness to their child’s needs. This parent expects obedience without questioning.
This type of parent also establishes rules and guidelines for their child(ren) but is more responsive. This type of parent is accepting of questions and wants to hear his/her child’s thoughts. When rules are broken, this type of parent is more forgiving and nurturing rather than punishing.
Parents who use this approach make few demands on their child, can be indulgent, and rarely discipline. This is the exact opposite of the authoritarian parenting style in which the parent uses a non-confrontational style, and wants to be his/her child’s friend.
This parenting style is characterized by low demands, low responsiveness and little communication. This type of parent will meet his/her child’s basic needs but are not involved.
At the end of the day, remember, you are the parents and you are in charge. Your child(ren) rely on you to be the authority figure even if they act in ways that make you think that they don’t want those boundaries. Boundaries are healthy. In fact, boundaries create a sense of safety and security.
As parents, figure out which parenting style you use and decide how you will parent your children together, consistently, every day, and without disrespecting each other.
Dr. Liz Matheis
Dr Liz Matheis and her team specialize in assisting children and their families with Anxiety, Autism, AD/HD, Learning Disabilities and Behavioral Struggles