Children are a reflection of their parents, and the parenting style that you use will determine the adult they become tomorrow.

As young human beings, they begin to display a personality from the moment they engage with the rest of the world.

They tend to reflect the people who they are around most often. In the formative years of your child’s life, which is zero to four years of age, these will be their parents or guardians.

How they feel, think, or act – and even the dreams they pursue – are affected by your parenting style. As such, it is imperative that the way you parent your children allows them to develop into healthy human beings. This is not only on a physical level, but also emotionally, mentally, and in every other way possible.

Categories of Parenting Styles

Remember that the manner with which you interrelate with your children, when you choose to discipline them, or if you choose to discipline them, will leave an indelible mark on their psyche that stays with them forever.

In general, your parenting style will fall into any of these four categories.

  1. Authoritarian
  2. Authoritative
  3. Permissive
  4. Uninvolved

The Authoritarian Parenting Style

If you are a strict parent that sets all the rules and does not consider your child’s feelings, then you fit into this category.

Authoritarian parents always lead with rules.

They are the kind of parents who you will hear saying, “Because I said so,” and sometimes will not consider giving a child a valid reason as to why they should follow the rules that govern their family.

They expect their children to be obedient always, without exception.

Parenting styles that fall within this category tend to limit your child’s problem-solving capabilities because they do not learn the skills growing up.

Children who grow up in such homes also do not get to voice their opinion.

It is important that authoritarian parents learn to help the child make better decisions and not have them feeling demoralized for their every mistake.

As adults, such children will follow rules, but they will also have self-esteem issues because they think their opinions do not matter.

They can also become hostile, angry, and aggressive because of repressed feelings towards their parents.

The Authoritative Parenting Style

This kind of parenting style focuses on maintaining a positive relationship with children.

It is opposite of the former parenting style in that when you set regulations, you think about your child’s feelings.

Authoritative parents won’t wound the child simply to enforce discipline, but they will clarify who is in charge.

They also spend time with their children in order to curb any potential misbehavior. Authoritative parents also implement constructive obedience techniques to emphasize acceptable behavior. For example, they use praise and reward systems.

This parenting style fosters happy and successful children who, in turn, become happy and successful adults that have great problem-solving skills.

Researchers discovered that children who benefit from this kind of parenting style develop into conscientious adults that are comfortable with sharing their ideas and concerns.

The Permissive Parenting Style

On the other hand, someone with a permissive parenting style will rarely enforce the rules and their children get away with bad behavior without consequence.

Such parents believe that their kids will adjust and discover the rules of life with minimal effort on their part. Such parents are indulgent when it comes to child rearing. Only when something serious occurs will they intervene strongly.

Because they forgive their children quickly, permissive parents don’t allow enough time for children to benefit from the consequences of their actions. They are also the kind of parents who will want to be their child’s best friend. But they still don’t discourage bad behavior as they should.

Such children are likely to have academic challenges and behavioral issues. They won’t care for rules. Neither will they respect anyone in charge. These kids may also suffer from depression and low self-confidence.

The Uninvolved Parenting Style

It seems uninvolved parents are careless with their children in that they never inquire about their homework or how they are doing at school. They don’t ask about their friends or what struggles they are having. Neither do they spend quality time with their kids. If you ask them about their kids, the answer might be, “I don’t know.”

Uninvolved parents set little or no rules for their children. They are not nurturing, and they give no parental advice. The children practically raise themselves.

Most of what they do is ensure that their child has food, clothing, and shelter. Most times, you will see this kind of behavior from parents who are drug abusers or who have mental issues. Therefore, they are incapable of helping their children in other ways.

And then, you have uninvolved parents who simply do not know how to raise a child. Or they have overwhelming issues with their jobs, finances, or personal relationships.

Again, children who undergo such child-rearing will have self-esteem issues. Their academics will suffer and they will behave badly.

You Can Use Different Parenting Styles

Many parents alter the types of parenting techniques they use, depending on the circumstance or where their child is at in their development.

This is probably the best approach.

At some point, your child will become more responsible and can make better decisions. If you teach them what is right from wrong, if you encourage them and show them affection, and if you discipline them, then they will have a healthy self-esteem and evolve into a balanced human being that respects authority.

By and large, scientists all agree that the authoritative parenting is the best option.

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