An article, written by Principal Clinical Psychologist Colby Pearce, which originally appeared on Colby’s blog site Attachment and Resilience.
Today, I have commented on three published articles that carry a similar theme. The theme is that so-called “helicopter parenting” causes anxiety and impedes the development of resilience in children.
The problem I have with such articles is that they assume all readers will understand what is meant by the term “helicopter parenting”. They do not precisely describe helicopter parenting in terms relating to overprotectiveness (which, incidentally, is another vague term). In failing to do so, they run the risk of the average reader forming the impression that any form of proactive care and sensitive responsiveness is potentially harmful to children’s development and emotional wellbeing. Such articles typically also fail to acknowledge that the vast majority of parents were “helicopter parents” when their children were infants; that this is a good thing because it promotes attachment security, which underpins future developmental outcomes and resilence; and that children’s self-confidence and resilience is enhanced by parents standing alongside or shoulder to shoulder in times of adversity, such that the child is more likely to experience mastery and less likely to experience overwhelming and disempowering failure.
My message is be there for your children!
For more information I would refer the reader to my earlier blog post concerning helicopter parenting. For more information about promoting resilience in children, please refer to my book A Short Introduction to Promoting Resilience in Children.