86. Helicopter versus Free-Range Moms

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The parenting styles of parents in the United States are often criticized. One type of parenting that is criticized is a helicopter parent. This kind of parents hover over their children like helicopters, which means these parents are always on top of their children.

While being an aware and involved parent is not a bad thing, helicopter parents take it to the extreme. The actions of helicopter parents actually hurt children, by not teaching them to be responsible for their actions. For example, a helicopter parents would call their adult college-age child to wake them up to go to class when part of college is learning to be responsible and learning to manage your own time. Helicopter parents are also overly worried about their kids getting hurt. This means helicopter parents hold back their child's natural curiosity. Part of growing up means your kid has to get hurt, physically and emotionally. This is how lessons are learned. Instead, the kids of helicopter parents can grow up to be overly needy, dependent adults. Some people blame the rise of helicopter parenting on the rise of cell phones. Mobile phones make it easier for parents to track their kids all the time.

The opposite of the helicopter mom is the free-range mom. The free-range mom follows a slow parenting style, meaning she lets her kids explore the world at their own pace with little direction. The name free-range comes from the idea that kids should have the freedom to explore their world or range in a way that makes sense to them. This often means that free-range moms will not schedule activities like extra classes or play dates for their kids. Instead a free-range mom will just let her child play in a park. There is less of an emphasis on things like the latest toys.

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