Being a parent is one of the most important jobs there is – it is also one of the hardest. The hours are long, there is no pay and not a lot of gratitude. Little attention is paid how to do parenting preparing people for this vital role, yet parents are the key to giving children a happy and stable childhood.
Most parents want to do their best for their children but for many, living with disadvantage can severely compromise their ability. Poverty, unsuitable and insecure housing, domestic violence, lone parenthood, and being a young parent can all disrupt a parent’s ability to cope, and families under stress need extra support. Parenting facts 61 per cent of British parents describe parenting as ‘fairly’ or ‘very difficult’. 94 per cent of parents say it is helpful to talk to another person about parenting problems. Services working with parents Our work includes parenting groups and one-to-one work with parents through our network of family centres, community-based parenting programmes, and specialised work with parents who have particular needs. Some services organise courses which give parents a chance to step back and think about some of the things they are doing and how to improve. We also help girls who become pregnant whilst still at school by providing support to enable them to finish their education and prepare for parenthood.
Barnardo’s parenting services provide both general support and specific parenting education programmes which enable parents to deal more effectively with a range of children’s behaviour. Use the CEOP website to find a number of ways to receive help and advice as well as the option to report any instance of sexual contact or harmful material to CEOP. Registered office: Tanners Lane, Barkingside, Ilford, Essex IG6 1QG. A parenting style is a psychological construct representing standard strategies that parents use in their child rearing. The quality of parenting can be more essential than the quantity of time spent with the child. Children go through different stages in life, therefore parents create their own parenting styles from a combination of factors that evolve over time as children begin to develop their own personalities. During the stage of infancy, parents try to adjust to a new lifestyle in terms of adapting and bonding with their new infant.
A child’s temperament and parents’ cultural patterns have an influence on the kind of parenting style a child may receive. The degree to which a child’s education is part of parenting is a further matter of debate. Early research in parenting and child development found that parents who provide their children with proper nurture, independence and firm control, have children who appear to have higher levels of competence and are socially skilled and proficient. Parenting practices are defined as specific behaviors that parents use to socialize their children”, while parenting style is “the emotional climate in which parents raise their children”. One study association that has been made is the difference between “child’s outcome and continuous measures of parental behavior”. Some of the associations that are listed include the following: support, involvement, warmth, approval, control, monitoring, and harsh punishment. Parenting practices such as parental support, monitoring and firm boundaries appear to be linked to higher school grades, less behavior problems and better mental health.
Beginning in the 17th century, two philosophers independently wrote works that have been widely influential in child rearing. John Locke’s 1693 book Some Thoughts Concerning Education is a well known foundation for educational pedagogy from a Puritan standpoint. Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development describes how children represent and reason about the world. Erik Erikson, a developmental psychologist, proposed eight life stages through which each person must develop. In order to move on to the next stage, the person must work out a “crisis” in which a new dilemma must be solved. Rudolf Dreikurs believed that pre-adolescent children’s misbehavior was caused by their unfulfilled wish to be a member of a social group.
He argued that they then act out a sequence of four mistaken goals: first they seek attention. If they do not get it, they aim for power, then revenge and finally feel inadequate. Frank Furedi is a sociologist with a particular interest in parenting and families. He believes that the actions of parents are less decisive than others claim.
He describes the term infant determinism as the determination of a person’s life prospects by what happens to them during infancy, arguing that there is little or no evidence for its truth. Diana Baumrind is a researcher who focused on the classification of parenting styles. Baumrind believed that parents should be neither punitive nor aloof. Rather, they should develop rules for their children and be affectionate with them. These parenting styles are meant to describe normal variations in parenting, not deviant parenting, such as might be observed in abusive homes. The parent is demanding and responsive.
When this style is systematically developed, it grows to fit the descriptions propagative parenting and concerted cultivation. Authoritative parenting is characterized by a child-centered approach that holds high expectations of maturity. Authoritative parents can understand how their children are feeling and teach them how to regulate their feelings. Authoritative parents will set clear standards for their children, monitor the limits that they set, and also allow children to develop autonomy. They also expect mature, independent, and age-appropriate behavior of children.
Punishments for misbehavior are measured and consistent, not arbitrary or violent. The parent is demanding but not responsive. Authoritarian parenting is a restrictive, punishment-heavy parenting style in which parents make their children follow their directions with little to no explanation or feedback and focus on the child’s and family’s perception and status. Children raised using this type of parenting may have less social competence because the parent generally tells the child what to do instead of allowing the child to choose by him or herself, making the child appear to excel in the short term but limiting development in ways that are increasingly revealed as supervision and opportunities for direct parental control decline. Children raised by authoritarian parents tend to be conformist, highly obedient, quiet, and not very happy.