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One of the hardest tasks to achieve is to have a good and consistent parenting style. There are instances of bad parenting that can have lasting consequences on children. Most parents use their own upbringing as a blueprint for parenting, which is not recommended due to evolution of society and social environment. It is proven that certain practices of parenting are more harmful than they are beneficial to your child.
What is Bad Parenting?
Bad parenting is a series of actions that can seriously harm the child’s demeanour and psychology. Bad parenting isn’t restricted to a single act; it is a collection of these acts that are usually what contributes to a harmful effect on the child. Most poor parenting may not be intentional, but this does not reduce it’s negative impact on the child. Some parents are not aware of the consequences of these actions and some might not even care. Bad parenting might stem from not knowing enough to be a better parent or from a general lack of apathy to learning the right way.
Bad parenting can have many adverse effects on your child. With our lifestyles being as fast-paced as they are today, it might seem easy to just tell your child what to do. However, you must remember that your child is an individual who requires care and nurturing from you. Make the time to join parenting groups and forums and bring up any issues you might be facing. Have an honest conversation with other parents and listen to any advice they might have. If there are any signs of the effects of poor parenting in your child, it might be best to consult a child psychologist.
Signs Of Bad Parenting
There are several actions and incidences that could make you a bad parent. Here are a few examples of bad parenting that you must avoid at all costs:
1. Reprimanding the Child Excessively
If your child does something wrong and you reprimand or scold him excessively for the mistake, it can have a negative influence on your child. This practice can have a worse effect if your child has displayed honesty and has confessed to making a mistake.
2. Disciplining the Child in Front of Everyone
You might lose your patience and scold, yell, or even hit your child in front of others. This will have a serious impact on your child’s confidence, and the feeling of shame arising from this method of discipline will be hard to shake off.
3. All Advice, No Encouragement
You dispense advice about everything, from brushing teeth to picking the right clothes rather than encouraging your child with support.
4. Withholding Affection
You do not give your child hugs or say ‘I love you’ to your child often. This will make your child feel emotionally disconnected from you.
5. Not Setting Rules
Children need structure and boundaries in order to grow up to be healthy individuals. If the child does not grow with discipline, then he/she will suffer in situations outside the home environment.
6. Lack of Support
Children need support, especially during stressful times like a performance at school or examinations. You could be more concerned about your work, and this might leave your child feeling anxious.
7. Comparing Your Child
You constantly tell your child that he/she should be like other children and emulate their positive traits. This is a sign of bad parenting.
8. Not Proud of His/Her Achievements
You never praise your child for his/her achievements and do not show pride in hard work.
9. Using a Criticising Tone
Using a tone that shows disapproval of all your child’s actions will leave a negative mark on him/her.
10. Not Respecting His/Her Feelings
You do not take the time to have a conversation with your child and understand his/her feelings. When opinions and feelings are disregarded and not addressed in a healthy manner, it could adversely affect kids.
11. Being a Poor Example
Your child will pick up on all your habits and behaviours. You might want to think about why and where your child has picked up a particular behaviour from.
12. Not Giving Him/Her a Choice
You do not give your child a choice and instead expect him/her to do something because you have said so.
13. Too Much Pampering
You might think that your child is the most special child, but for the rest of the world he/she just another child. Making him/her feel entitled could lead to bad behaviour that causes social isolation.
14. Being Overprotective
You protect your child from every imaginable danger out there. This will make your child fearful and afraid of taking any type of risk, from making new friends to trying new activities.
15. Lack of Trust
You do not allow your child to make decisions because you are sure that they will be the wrong choices or you do not believe him/her.
16. Not Giving Your Time
You are always too busy to talk or play with your child or just have no interest to do these things. Being glued to your phone screen while your child is talking to you can make them feel neglected.
Impact Of Bad Parenting On Children
Bad parenting can have a lasting adverse impact on your child in terms of behaviour and psychology. Here are a few effects of bad parenting:
1. Antisocial Behaviours
When your child does not consider how his actions might affect others, it is known as antisocial behaviour. A severe form of this can lead to substance abuse, mental health problems, crime, and poor health. Bad parenting actions like parental drug abuse, domestic violence, and maternal depression usually contribute to this condition. This is also observed in children whose parents displayed critical, negative, and coercive behaviour.
2. Poor Resilience
Children learn how to cope with emotional, mental, and physical trauma from seeing how their parents deal with any hardships themselves. In this case, bad parenting comes in the form of not shielding the child from a crisis or not being able to handle negative emotions, which in turn, rubs off on the child.
Many studies have shown that parents who have a negative approach will have children with a higher susceptibility to depression. Bad parenting actions that lead to depression include low levels of emotional and physical support, physical punishment, and an unhealthy expression of negative emotions.
Many studies have shown that kindergarteners who have explosive anger issues usually have a poor relationship with their mothers. Negative parenting techniques like rough handling and expressing negative emotions towards the child during infancy will cause the child to have high levels of anger.
5. Lack of Empathy
If the child is treated with indifference at home, then chances are high that he/she will behave the same with others outside.
6. Difficulty with Relationships
Parents who do not help the child express their emotions in a healthy manner will find that their children are unable to maintain friendships. Bad parenting also could cause the child to question trust and develop low self-confidence.
How to Be a Good Parent?
One of the biggest steps you can take is admitting that you have a few bad parenting techniques. You can always learn new ways to overcome these shortcomings. Here are a few tips on being a good parent:
1. Hands-on Parenting
Get involved with your child’s life and take it upon yourself to teach your child some of life’s most important lessons. Focus your energy on building an emotional rapport with your child.
2. Do Not Shout at Your Child
Instead of shouting at or scolding children, try to calmly reason with them. Give them a time-out if they’re being difficult and then sit down and listen to why they were upset in the first place. If it has to do with school, then calmly ask your child to explain the difficulties he/she is facing. Explain to your child why his/her actions are wrong and the larger consequences of those actions.
3. Give Reasons
If you want your child to do something, then explain to him/her the reasons behind your request. If you want him/her to finish school work before going out to play, then explain the reasons behind it. A great way to explain it would be to say that the second he/she finishes, play time begins. This also works as motivation.
4. Set Rules
Structure is important for your child’s development. However, whatever new rules you do put in place, do make sure to discuss the same with your child. In case you want your child to take up a chore around the house, then have a discussion with him/her about which chore he/she would like to do and to what degree you want that chore to be done. Ask your child to set up a schedule for this new chore. Sticking to this new schedule will boost self-esteem.
5. Give Your Child Choices
Talk to your child about the different options he/she might have. It can be something small like deciding if he/she wants to go to the park with you the next day. Allowing your child to make choices will boost confidence in making decisions.
One of the most important aspects of parenting is listening to your child. Even if what your child says seems mundane to you, you must listen, as it might be something important to him/her.
7. Be a Good Example
Children are known to pick up habits and actions from the people around them. As a parent, your child will be looking up to you for advice on almost everything, particularly in the younger years. Practice healthy habits and your child is bound to pick them up himself/herself.
8. Don’t Raise Your Hand
You’ll encounter numerous times during your parenting journey, when your child may misbehave or disobey to a large extent, making you lose your patience. However, take a deep breath and count before you raise your hand on him/her. Physical violence can have serious psychological effects on the child, affecting development. In turn, this causes children to emulate the same behaviour when they become parents/
9. Inculcate Reward and Punishment
Reward and Punishment is by far, the best way to discipline a child. Reward good behaviour and punishing bad behaviour sets a touchstone to the child on which behaviour to follow and which to avoid. Make sure to set punishments that are non-physical.
10. Don’t Suffocate Your Child
Rather than being too controlling and constantly hovering around your child’s every step, give them some element of freedom. If they know the consequences of bad behaviour, they are likely to misuse the freedom they’ve been given.
Bad parenting is not just harmful to your child at the moment, but will definitely have a lasting negative impact on your child for years to come, which could stay on, even as an adult. Remember that parenting is not just about imparting wisdom to your child, but about allowing them to grow and find their own lifestyles. This includes raising them to be responsible for their actions and accepting responsibility for the decisions they make and the actions they take. How you decide to impart the knowledge and teach them about responsibility can be the key element to raising your child. This should not be forced onto them in any manner. Talk to child psychologists to learn how to communicate with your child. It is recommended that as a parent, both your partner and you attend parenting seminars, talk to counsello8 and work out a manner in which to develop and navigate through your parenting philosophy.
Coming up with a parenting philosophy can be a challenge due to the numerous hurdles in both faith and conscience that you will face. Remember that the past generations of parenting are not just to be followed blindly but to be used as a platform to evolve from. In the past hitting your child was acceptable, but research shows physical intimidation does more harm than good when it comes to raising your child. Establishing mutual respect and a line of open communication is important, so is allowing your child to make mistakes and encouraging them to recover from their failures. A point every parent must remember is not to overwhelm the child with restrictions. Letting your child grow while having fun and being social has numerous benefits to their mental health.
Also Read: 10 Best Parenting Books