Parenting Tip – Teach Child to Accept Responsibility Without Being a Helicopter Parent

Parenting tip –

Educate your child to accept responsibility: –

“Be the parent today that you want your kids to remember tomorrow”- Anonymous.

Once, 3 students didn’t deliberately study for their examination which was to be held the next day. Next morning to avoid assessment they made themselves dirty and requested the principle to postpone their exams as they went to attend a family function yesterday where on the way back the tire of their car busted and they had to push the car till morning. After a deep taught, the principal accepted their request and rescheduled their exams after two days. They were extremely happy and came prepared for the exams after two days. The principal informed them that all the three will sit separately in different classrooms for the test to which they happily agreed as they were prepared. To everyone’s surprise, the test had only two questions with a total of 50 marks:-

Name: -____________________________________ (1 mark)

Which tire busted: – (49 marks)

a. Front left b. Front right c. back left d. back right

I researched around 250 parents (of all age groups between 27-60) asking them suggestions for raising a responsible, helpful child. These are five best inputs:-

Explain to them the consequences of their action (good or bad).

Help them on being solutions focused than focusing on the problems.

Assist them to stop the blame game and eliminate excuses.

Facilitate them to focus on things which matters the most and which are within their control/influence.

Mentor them to take ownership of their lives, their problems, and their behavior.

Failing to accept responsibility has several adverse consequences and destructive long term effects. The kids should learn to accept the personal responsibility of their own conduct as accepting conscientiousness will give them large control to live the life they want; it will foster pro-activeness required for taking decisions and suitable actions and makes them competent to face lives challenges with gut and grit.

For teaching them to accept responsibility you don’t have to become a helicopter parent:-

“I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way. Show them all the beauty they possess inside”- Whitney Houston.

Who is a helicopter parent? A helicopter parent also called a ‘cosseting parent’ is a parent who does the task the child is capable of doing alone. They pay extremely close attention to their child’s experiences or problems. Often termed as ‘overparenting’ helicopter parents are too involved in their child’s life which often leads to overprotecting, over perfecting and over controlling them. Such parents select their kid’s friends, activities, provide misappropriate help for school work, project, assignments and even ensure that their child has a certain teacher or coach. Wikipedia describes that helicopter parents are so named because like helicopters they hover closely overhead, rarely out of reach, whether their children need them or not. From this word I remember one of my college friend Neha who even during her final year of graduation in college wasn’t allowed to talk to male friends, leave the house after 6 pm, she would in fact switch her phone after 7pm and sleep by 9 pm (not because she wanted to but her parents forced her to), her mom dropped and picked her from college every day. She had fewer friends, never attended any class picnic/seminars/annual day or sports events. All this made her extremely shy, quiet and introvert girl and now even after a decade, she would go to her mom and dad crying for help when she faces any challenging or difficult situation in life. She lacks autonomy, confidence, and competences to solve her own problems. Do you want to raise a child like Neha? I am sure most of us won’t. So please allow the child to fight their own battle, permit them to take the risk, fail, learn to grow. Allow them to do things that they should be doing for themselves, don’t aim for perfection, or be too strict or demanding and don’t try to fix everything for them. Helicopter parents do this with good intentions but there are several disadvantages. Firstly, their children are deprived to find solutions to their problem hence the child lacks problem-solving ability which lowers their self-confidence and the child feels a lack of control over their own life. Secondly, the kid becomes totally dependent upon their parents who increases chances of anxiety and depression as the child never learns to explore new skills and are unable to handle failures and challenges. To avoid interference in their life and let them blossom in their own way.

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