Helicopter Parents Graduate But Their Kids Don't Mature
You would never go with your child to a job interview, right? (Just maybe tell them what to say, and probably drive them there.)
Would you call a professor and ask them about your child's bad grade? The thought is ridiculous, isn't it? But university professors say it happens all the time (and my Dad is one, so he knows).
But you would help your kids fill out their high school application forms, maybe even write a paragraph or two. Because you want the school to see their true selves, and if they don't get into the right high school it could be all downhill from there.
Where does being a good parent end and being a helicopter parent begin? When in doubt, lean towards doing less not more, say the experts. Because as our kids age, they are less and less sure how to interact with the big, wide world, and more used to their parents doing the hard stuff for them.
This isn't the kids fault, but instead the fault of their well-meaning parents.
"This is a different planet now. It's Planet Mom and Dad. And mom and dad need to seriously consider what it is to be an adult, and what kind of citizens they're bringing into the world," says Tim Blackmore, a professor of information and media studies at Western University in Ontario.
An article in Chatelaine says that our constant hovering is producing "spectacularly poor workers, lovers, friends and community members."
It seems that parents have lowered their expectations about what it means to be a 20, or even 30 year old. And in doing so have lowered their children's ability to make good decisions about what it means to be a successful adult.
Of course, we won't do that. But it starts early. It starts with micromanaging their homework, laying out their clothes for them and being their chauffeur, personal chef and friendship coach. The seeds of adulthood are sowed early, and we need to learn to lay off.
Just remind me of that when it comes to filling in high school application forms next year.
Do you have helicopter tendencies?
Want more chaos? Last year, I had a guest post wondering why there was so much bad news about travelling with kids.