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What is Overparenting? How to avoid it?

What is Overparenting? How to avoid it?

What is Overparenting?
The term, Overparenting, also known as helicopter and hothouse parenting or snowplough, was first used in 1969 by Dr Haim Ginott in his book Parents & Teenagers by teens, who said their parents would hover over them like a helicopter.
However, it was the first decade of the 2000s when the term gained popularity, and in 2011, it got entry into the dictionary. “Lawnmower parenting,” “cosseting parent,” or “bulldoze parenting” are other similar terms.
By Overparenting, we mean a parent’s attempts to intervene and run their child’s life as per their own choices. Carolyn Daitch, PhD, director of the Center for the Treatment of Anxiety Disorders near Detroit and author of Anxiety Disorders: The Go-To Guide, categorizes them as the kind of parents who are overly focused on their children. “Usually, they take too much responsibility for their children’s experiences and, specifically, their successes or failures,” he said.
Ann Dunnewold, Ph. D., a licensed psychologist and author of Even June Cleaver Would Forget the Juice Box, stated, “It means being involved in a child’s life in a way that is overcontrolling, overprotecting, and over perfecting, in a way that is more than responsible Parenting.” These Over Parenting parents can also be called the “hyper-protective parents.”
In the 90s, these hyper-protective parents hired language tutors for toddlers, rushed to soccer fields at the sight of skinned knees, and walked through calendars full of playdates and rewarding outings. However, as more helicopter-parent kids came of age, teachers and child development researchers observed that Overparenting had adverse effects. Ironically, excessive safeguarding boys and girls for success by their parents did not help develop psychological resilience and creativity in children to overcome the inevitable pitfalls and ice jams along the path to adulthood.
This form of parenting most often applies to parents who help high school or college-going students with tasks of their capacity (for instance, calling a professor about poor grades, arranging a class schedule, managing exercising habits). However, helicopter parenting /over-parenting can be applied at any age.
In a child’s infancy and over-parenting parent might constantly shadow the child, always playing with and directing his behaviour, allowing him zero alone time.
While in elementary school, these parents may ensure their child gets a specific teacher or coach, select the child’s friends and activities, or provide disproportionate help for homework and school projects.

What are the signs of Overparenting?
Parental Temper Tantrums
A common sign of parenting is a sincere desire to provide the best for children. However, that urge can fret into the intra-parental competition, as well as anger and hostility at the merest chance of a child being harmed in any way. Many events have been cancelled because many parents jumped in for the safety of their kids. It is also found that many parents fight on behalf of children – with principals, coaches and friends – they may have crossed the line from the helicopter to (not so) stealth bomber; we may call it over protectiveness.

Experts recommend that parents must set free their children and enable them to resolve conflicts between peers rather than intervene immediately to de-escalate situations. Child psychologists often advocate allowing boys and girls to learn how to resolve their differences with their siblings and friends on their own instead of constantly relying on parental mediators. In this way, teens can learn to solve their problems. Parents should also select their battles wisely on athletics grounds and in classrooms. Failure to score or win is a valuable lesson for children, while watching a parent yell at a teacher or coach only undermines that adult’s authority. While it is understandable that parents do not enjoy seeing their children disagreeing or disappointed, it is not their job to advocate on behalf of their children.

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