It’s safe to say that parenting is no easy task and there is no such thing as a perfect parent. Whether your kids are still in the crib, learning to walk and talk, going through their moody teenage years or getting ready to go off on their own, every day brings on new challenges. Every reaction and decision you make when raising your child contributes to your overall style of parenting and influences the way your child feels about themself.
Maybe you clearly identify with one parenting style or maybe you see yourself as a combination of multiple. Maybe you haven’t quite figured out what kind of parenting style you wish to embody and that’s okay too! This blog post will dive into the four main types of parenting; authoritarian, authoritative, permissive and uninvolved, to provide you with a better understanding of the different approaches and the effects they have on children.
A parent who takes an authoritarian style has a generally strict approach when parenting. They have high expectations and enforce clear rules for their children to follow. Authoritarian parents place a strong emphasis on the emotional and physical safety of their children. Their children tend to be well behaved because they were taught to follow rules or risk receiving some sort of punishment. However, it is common that this type of childhood can result in hostile or aggressive behavior. They become so used to the structure and “because I said so” response that they feel as if their opinions hold little value and therefore their self-esteem suffers. When it comes to technology use, these parents are usually looking to have some control over the online activity of their child. They are likely to set screen time limits, block websites, restrict the use of certain apps and have full access to their child’s digital devices and data.
Authoritative parents work to balance their demands with their responsiveness to their child’s needs. They set clear standards and expectations but give their children the freedom to fail and learn from their mistakes. They encourage conversation so that their child can feel empowered to make responsible decisions on their own. Their children have their support when needed but are forced to figure things out on their own. Authoritative parents enforce teaching them to respect others and themself and as a result, their children make for great leaders. As modern parents, they are likely to see the value in technology and support its progression. These parents want to have input and provide guidance to their children while allowing them to interact online. They want their child to have the freedom to make mistakes but see value in being involved in this aspect of their life.
Permissive parents are very responsive to the needs and wants of their children without setting strict rules. They are lenient and accepting of the choices made by their child and give them the freedom to make decisions, good or bad. They ultimately want to act as more of a friend to their child than a parent. This can positively impact their child’s self-esteem but sometimes overdoes it to the point of arrogance and selfishness. When kids are young, this lack of structure can result in impulsive behavior where their child is unable to take responsibility for their actions. They grow up in a household that avoids confrontation or discipline and as a result, they are unable to function when given boundaries. Permissive parents are likely to let their children decide when they want to be on social media and do not enforce any restrictions on how they interact online. It’s possible they follow their child on social media but are not interested in being too involved in their child’s online experience or attempt to influence their decision making.
An uninvolved parenting style is one with low levels of control and warmth. They are often preoccupied with other tasks and as a result, express little interest in the lives of their children. They don’t take the time to enforce rules and make their children feel like they are on their own. This can affect a child’s self-esteem and mental health as their childhood lacks emotional connection and care. They do not have the support needed from a parent and are forced to be independent in almost every aspect. Uninvolved parents likely don’t know which social media platforms their child is exploring nor care to enforce any expectations or rules for how they should be using them. This lack of guidance and involvement from uninvolved parents can lead a child into dangerous situations, especially when they are interacting with others on social media for the first time.
Modern parents face a completely new realm of challenges due to the progression of social media. Technology has given children the opportunity to express themselves, see the world from different perspectives and connect with people from all over the world. But, with this opportunity also comes the reality that they can get themselves into some dangerous situations. Whether you believe in enforcing strict rules or letting your child figure things out themself, implementing a monitoring service for their online activity can ease your mind and help you confidently parent in the digital age.
We present your child’s data in an unbiased way so that parents have the freedom to interpret the data in correlation with their preferred parenting style. If they believe what their child is doing is “inappropriate” in regards to their expectations and household standards, they can address these issues with their child. If they do not see any issues with their child’s activity, they can feel informed and go about their day, allowing their child to continue exploring in the same way. Your involvement and guidance can protect them from dangerous situations like sex trafficking or cyberbullying while teaching you about the positive aspects of their activity like new interests or new friends made. Being a parent is all about trial and error and Cyber Dive wants to serve as a tool and resource for parents of all parenting styles!