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Are you or do you know any helicopter parents?

 
 
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 12:57 am
Quote:
helicopter parent 79 up, 1 down
The bane of the dean's existence. The parent who hovers and flaps his wings while the kid lives in his shadow. Particularly prevalent at high-priced colleges, where parents feel obliged (or entitled) to intervene on issues down to the candlepower of the lightbulbs.
Yes, helicopter parent, your intentions are good, but that rotor of yours is causing a din.--Felix Carroll, Albany Times Union, January 27, 2005

11 thumbs up
A parent who hovers over their child, regardless of the child's needs or desires. An over protective parent who does not want their child to face any difficulty without their parent's help.
That kid's mom just went onto the field to check on his injury. All he did was slide into home. Think she's a helicopter parent??


http://www.onpointradio.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/091125overparenting225.jpg
http://www.onpointradio.org/2009/11/how-much-is-too-much-parenting
Quote:
Wednesday, November 25, 2009 at 10:00 AM EST
How Much Is Too Much Parenting?

American parenting is under the microscope these days.

Helicopter parents " overprotective, always hovering, smothering their kids with control " are the new bad guys. Whatever happened, say critics, to just saying “do your homework” or “go play”?

The counter-movement goes by many names: “slow parenting”, “free-range parenting.” Give the kids some space. Let them learn and fall and stand again on their own. They’ll be stronger in the end.

It can be a tough balance. And it may be moving right now.

This hour, On Point: Finding the sweet spot " and the backlash against over-parenting.


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Type: Discussion • Score: 9 • Views: 4,176 • Replies: 28
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 12:59 am
@tsarstepan,
N0t relative to the description in that text.
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 01:07 am
@ossobuco,
In the podcast associated with the link, the terms have been part of the discussion.
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 02:02 am
@tsarstepan,
I'm not. I think people thought I was what might be called an 'indulgent' parent when my kids were little - I know my husband thought I coddled my son especially (because he was more vocal about his wishes then my daughter as a baby, and still is today, whereas my daughter is just quietly competent about meeting her own needs and was like that even as a baby).
But I wasn't worried about them and that's not why I was always with them, doing what they did.
I wasn't always wanting to oversee the outcome and make sure it was favorable in comparison to everyone else's kid's outcome- it was just that I loved being around them so much and I liked doing what they did- it's almost like having kids gave me the opportunity to be a kid again in the sense of playing outside all the time and riding bikes and doing all the stuff I used to love to do when I was a kid.

But when they got to be teenagers, I realized that was well and finally over. They don't want me hanging out at their parties with them- they don't want me going on walks or bike rides with them when they're talking to their friends- and I have no problem with that.

In terms of school - they do that on their own. They're both smart and competent and my feeling is that I already did my own work in school and I've made sure they've been prepared to do theirs. They'll have to live by and with their own decisions in that regard, and deal with the consequences.
I let my daughter stay home from school when she asks to which isn't very often and her father will call and say, 'Why didn't Olivia go to school today?' And I'll say, 'Well, she was tired because she stayed up and did all this work for her art class and she had two free periods today, blah, blah, blah...' and he'll say, 'You sound just like her - Rebecca you're a TEACHER- you should make her go to school.'
And I say, 'Well, she usually DOES go to school...and it's because I AM a teacher than I know she can take a day off...'

Maybe those days off will mean she gets a B instead of an A*. But I figure that's on her.

I do know some helicopter parents though. I just look and feel sorry for them thinking, 'Wow - what pressure to put on yourself...if everything doesn't go perfect for your kid - you'll have a nervous breakdown or something.'
My sister was like that - she called me and wanted to go in detail over what grades her son got in what highschool course and how it would effect the rest of his life and future and I just said, 'He's a smart kid - he'll graduate and do something,' and he did. But damned if she didn't worry about every little thing every single step of the way.
How can you live like that trying to feel you can control what you can't control (another person's life)?
I wouldn't have the energy for it.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 02:18 am
I am not, never have been. However, my wife is a 1SG, has run two different companies of about 100 soldiers. Both times she has in the beginning had SEVERAL parents call her trying to either find out about their kid or get their kid out of trouble.

She shoots them down to the point of nearly being rude, and then goes to tell the soldier to make sure it does not happen again. After about a month word finally gets around that this **** does not fly with her, and the calls stop.

Legally she cant say anything anyways, because of privacy rights, but she HATES needing to waste time talking to these idiot parents who want to smother a SOLDIER with concern.
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 02:46 am
@hawkeye10,
That's a really unexpected place to find helicopter parents. I would have thought that type of parent would absolutely refuse their child's wish to enter military service. Or if anything, let them get commissioned into the army rather then enlist.
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 03:16 am
@tsarstepan,
I would have thought that parents would have known that they legally lose the right to check up on their kids with third parties when the kid turns 18 years old. I further would expect that parents would think better of trying to do it anyways when the third party is a 1Sg in the army...you know, the thought that maybe mommy and daddy checking up on private Snuffy might be wee bit embarrassing to said Private Snuffy when his Army chums find out about it.....
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 03:21 am
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
..you know, the thought that maybe mommy and daddy checking up on private Snuffy might be we bit embarrassing to said Private Snuffy when his Army chums find out about it.....

Laughing Laughing Laughing maybe private Snuffy will write them a letter every now and then in the future.

Yeah, again - that's on the kid (or adult in this case). If they haven't been raised to understand and care that mom and dad will get worried about them in a combat zone and would like to hear occasionally how they're doing - the officers and other army personnel can't be expected to take that responsibility for that person.
Sad that a person wouldn't understand how his mom and dad would worry and do everything to alleviate it, but the fact is that such behavior may speak to the relationship itself (or lack of it) and the poor kid might be trying to escape the hovering and overbearing parents.
0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 08:02 am
I know a lot of parents that are like this. When I was working in the Residence Halls in College, I would see some parents come up to do the student's laundry on a weekly basis. It freaked me out.

T
K
O
DrewDad
 
  0  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 08:08 am
Good lord. It's a term designed to tell parents they can't win.

If you take care of your kid, you're helicoptering. If you let your kid fend for him/herself then you're neglectful.
boomerang
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 08:41 am
I read that Time article yesterday; very interesting. It helped me understand why people think I'm such a nut for letting Mo get himself to and from school on his own.

We live less than a block from school and people think I'm throwing him to the wolves by letting him bike there.

I'm a lot stricter than the parents of most of Mo's friends but Mo also has a lot more freedom than those kids. I don't know where I fall into the helicopter/neglect spectrum. Because of Mo's history I intervene in different kinds of things than most parents have to. Maybe that's why I see a lot of things as "small stuff" and don't sweat it.

My parents gave us kids a lot of leash and we all turned out okay, I'd like to do the same for Mo.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 08:54 am
@DrewDad,
I do know what you mean... I think there is an extreme though too where it's legitimate criticism (like the parents doing their kids' laundry in college -- yeesh).

I know one helicopter parent who has done some serious damage in our community. I worry about her kid (not in terms of clear-cut abuse, just how he'll emerge as an adult from that kind of parenting). I knew another who really underwent a change when her daughter became involved in our (excellent) preschool -- she was WAAAAAAAAAYYYYY overprotective, to the detriment of her kid, and loosened up considerably in the two years we were all there. I ran into the kid recently (they live in another town though they came here for preschool, so I don't see them much) and she seemed fine -- confident, functional.

Like boomer, I've gotten criticism from both sides. That I'm too laissez-faire/ that I'm too involved.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 09:00 am
@tsarstepan,
Quote:
Whatever happened, say critics, to just saying “do your homework” or “go play”?


The "go play" thing is complicated btw and very much at the center of this in a lot of ways. Kids crave the company of other kids -- playing alone is fine in doses but not all the time. And the way things are set up these days, it's a lot more complicated than it used to be to just go outside and find other kids to play with.

Lack of spontaneous play opportunities = need for controlled play opportunities = more parental/ adult supervision = more parental/ adult intervention = less autonomous kids.

One thing I'm grateful for in my community is that the baseline is get kids together and then ignore them while they go do whatever. I know that's a bit unusual.

Quote:
The counter-movement goes by many names: “slow parenting”, “free-range parenting.” Give the kids some space. Let them learn and fall and stand again on their own. They’ll be stronger in the end.


We (I know me, boomer and FreeDuck have all used it, I think boomer came up with the phrase) call it "slacker parenting."
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 09:58 am
I know tons of helicopter parents. I live in the land of micromanaging one's child's life from infancy through college and beyond. Many, if not most, of the parents in my community now plan for their children to return home after college for a few years so they can continue the trend.

Not me...
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 01:14 pm
http://www.hulu.com/watch/69999/the-simpsons-hovering-helicopter-homer
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helicopter_parent
Quote:
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Helicopter parent is a colloquial, early 21st-century term for a parent who pays extremely close attention to his or her child's or children's experiences and problems, particularly at educational institutions. The term was originally coined by Foster W. Cline, M.D. and Jim Fay in their 1990 book Parenting with Love and Logic: Teaching Children Responsibility[1](www.loveandlogic.com). Helicopter parents are so named because, like helicopters, they hover closely overhead, rarely out of reach, whether their children need them or not. In Scandinavia, this phenomenon is known as curling parenthood and describes parents who attempt to sweep all obstacles out of the paths of their children. It is also called "overparenting". Parents try to resolve their child's problems, and try to stop them coming to harm by keeping them out of dangerous situations[2][3].
Some college professors and administrators[who?] are now referring to "Lawnmower parents" to describe mothers and fathers who attempt to smooth out and mow down all obstacles, to the extent that they may even attempt to interfere at their children's workplaces, regarding salaries and promotions, after they have graduated from college and are supposedly living on their own. As the children of "helicopter parents" graduate and move into the job market, personnel and human resources departments are becoming acquainted with the phenomenon as well. Some have reported that parents have even begun intruding on salary negotiations[4]. An extension of the term, "Black Hawk parents," has been coined for those who cross the line from a mere excess of zeal to unethical behavior, such as writing their children's college admission essays.
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 03:35 pm
@Diest TKO,
Quote:
I know a lot of parents that are like this. When I was working in the Residence Halls in College, I would see some parents come up to do the student's laundry on a weekly basis. It freaked me out.

Yeah, one of my other sisters who is most assuredly NOT a helicopter parent told me that her son asked her to call him on the mornings that he had an eight o'clock class to make sure he was awake. She said, 'How about I buy you an alarm clock?' He answered, 'I have an alarm clock - it's just that it's too easy to switch it off and go back to sleep, but if you call me, I'll feel guilty about not going to class and I won't be able to get back to sleep.'
So she agreed to do it - she was awake for work anyway and she said at least it showed that he wanted toTRY to do the right thing.
So after like two weeks he told her that she didn't have to call her anymore, he had it under control.
About two weeks later, the registrar of the school called her and asked how her son was doing, and my sister said, 'Fine, as far as I know...' and the woman said, 'Well, we were just wondering when he would be back in school and by the way, I'm so sorry to hear about your mother's death, we know it's hard to lose a grandparent, but if he doesn't return soon, he'll lose the credits for this semester...' and my sister said,' Oh yes, well thank you, I'm sure he'll be back in class tomorrow and when you see him can you ask him to call me and tell me how my mother's funeral went, you see because he didn't tell me my mother had died so I missed the funeral.' Laughing Laughing Laughing
My sister cracks me up - the poor lady was like, 'Oh ****' and my sister is just laughing and she says, 'I TOLD him not to sign up for an 8:00 class.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Nov, 2009 05:38 pm
@ossobuco,
I meant that I didn't know any helicopter parents as so described..
but I'm not all that involved with parents of school age children at this point.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 02:03 am
Example of the worst case helicopter parenting:
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  2  
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 07:21 am
Ha! They had me fooled for a minute there.

It reminds me of Mo and my arguements about cell phones, which he adores and craves. I tell him I'm so glad they didn't have those when I was a kid because I wouldn't have been able to stand being found all the time.
0 Replies
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Wed 16 Dec, 2009 07:45 am
so these parents are like Transformers?


cool
0 Replies
 
 

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