Which Parenting Style Is The Best?

November 22, 2023

According to research, authoritative parenting ranks highly in academic, social-emotional, and behavioral outcomes. Similar to authoritarian parents, authoritative parents have high expectations for their children but even higher expectations for their own conduct.

How Is Authoritative Parenting Defined?

Authoritative parents are frequently supportive and attuned to their children's requirements. They guide their children through open and honest conversations to teach them values and logic.

As with authoritarian parents, they establish and enforce rules. In contrast to authoritarian parents, they are far more nurturing.

Some characteristics shared by authoritative parents:

  • Parents that are sensitive to their child's emotional needs and have high expectations
  • Frequent communication and consideration of their child's thoughts, feelings, and opinions
  • Permit natural consequences to take place, but use these occasions to assist their youngster in reflecting and growing.
  • Encourage autonomy and reasoning
  • Highly engaged in their child's development and advancement

Why Experts Agree Authoritative Parenting Is The Most Effective Style?

Studies have shown that authoritative parents are more likely to create self-assured, academically successful, socially adept, and problem-solving children.

Instead of constantly rescuing their children, as is common for permissive parents, authoritative parents permit their children to make errors. This gives children the opportunity to learn while reassuring them that their parents will provide support.

When dealing with disagreement, authoritative parenting is especially beneficial since how we learn to cope with conflict as children have a significant impact on how we handle our losses and how resilient we are as adults.

With permissive parents, it is typically up to the child to resolve issues. The parent "loses" while the youngster "wins." This method has been shown to make children more egocentric and less able to self-regulate.

There are occasions when a punishment, such as a time-out, is necessary. But the issue with consistent punishment is that it teaches your child nothing useful. In most situations, it teaches kids that whoever has the greatest power wins, regardless of fairness.

Let's imagine your 10-year-old kid begs not to attend soccer practice, stating, "I don't think I'm any good at it."

In response,

  • A permissive parent may say, "Your choice."
  • A negligent parent may tell their child, "Do whatever you want... it's your life."
  • A dictatorial parent would declare, "You must. I do not wish to hear from you again."
  • A parent with authority could say, "I realize that you don't want to attend. But sometimes overcoming the desire to avoid difficult tasks is the only way to improve!"

Although authoritative parents establish boundaries and expect their children to conduct properly, they do not demand mindless compliance. They converse and reason with the child, which encourages collaboration and teaches children the logic behind the regulations.

Authoritative parenting doesn’t guarantee success

While authoritative parenting receives the greatest acclaim from experts, it is crucial to understand that utilizing a single strategy does not always ensure positive results.

Parenthood is not a precise science. In many aspects, it resembles an art form. My advice as a child psychologist and mother is to be compassionate and understanding, but also to establish discipline and limits.

Focus not solely on punishment. Be encouraging and attentive to your youngster. Ask them questions and make an effort to see things from their perspective. Allow children to participate in decision-making so that they can grow and learn independently.

Parenting styles and parenting techniques are not interchangeable. A parenting style is an emotional atmosphere in which a kid is raised, whereas a parenting technique is a particular activity employed by parents.

In short, behave as you would like them to behave.

Would you like to know more about what parenting is? Read our blogs to learn. 

Annie Archibald has a PhD in Family Studies from York and has taught in universities for decades. Along with her professional career, she also is a mother of five and now a grandmother to two loving boys.

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