Strict parents, otherwise known as a tiger mother or father, may feel like they’re doing their child a favor by not allowing them to become disrespectful or to get into trouble, but is there such a thing as being too strict? Strict parenting can have a number of effects on your child that may not be positive, which can leave you wondering whether you’re really doing the right thing. Instead, it’s important to find the perfect balance between giving your child the independence he needs, while still being a strict parent who has your child’s best interests in mind.
The Strict Definition
Many people have their own definition of strict, but according to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, the definition of the word strict is listed as “demanding that people obey rules or behave in a certain way.” While it’s appropriate for parents to expect their children to obey their rules and behave in a way that is expected, parents can overdo it and require too much of their children. This can create negative effects, rather than helping mold a child into the adult you think he or she should be.
The Effects of Strict Parenting
Before exploring what qualifies as strict parenting, it’s essential to learn what kinds of strict parenting effects this behavior can have on your children. While children need rules to help them grow and become productive members of society when they grow up, they also need to learn how to develop their independence and think and make decisions for themselves. The older they get, the more freedom they should have to explore the type of person they want to be. With strict parents, this can be extremely difficult. The following are some of the negative strict parents effects your child may experience.
- Denies the ability to develop self-discipline and responsibility — While having strict limitations can help keep your child from getting into trouble, it can also impede their ability to learn how to make the right decisions on their own. In addition, it can make your child more likely to rebel, harming his ability to take responsibility for his own actions. Instead of focusing on control, it’s best to consider which decisions your child should be making on his own.
- Teaches bullying to children — Even though strict parents aren’t bullies in the commonly used sense of the word, their behavior can teach their children to bully others. When children feel they have no control over their own lives, they are more likely to exert control over someone else’s.
- A higher tendency to be angry or depressed — Children who are raised by strict parents are much more likely to suffer from anger problems or to become depressed. This is because they feel like their parents aren’t there for them and can’t provide the support they need.
- Teaches children power is right — While it’s important for children to learn to obey, they shouldn’t do it without question throughout their lives. Children with strict parents often become followers who don’t take responsibility for their own actions and don’t ask questions, even when they should.
- More likely to become rebellious — Most children go through a rebellious stage, especially when they are teenagers. However, children who have a strict parent are more likely to take part in the worst rebellious behaviors, which can have negative long-term effects.
- Undermines the parent/child relationship — Children need to develop a positive relationship with their parents. When parents are overly strict with their children, it undermines this relationship and makes it more difficult for children to trust that their parents have their best interest in mind.
When parents develop strict practices, they often feel like they are doing what’s best for their children. However, this typically isn’t the case. Children are still developing emotionally, physically and psychologically, which is why it’s important to set a solid foundation for their adult life. Being too strict isn’t going to offer that foundation so they can become productive members of society.
How Do You Know If You’re Too Strict?
While some parents know they are too strict and continue to act in this way, there are many others who don’t know they qualify as overly strict parents. In these situations, identifying the behaviors of strict parents can help you change the way you handle things so you can give your child the best chance at success in the future. The following are some of the ways you can tell you are too strict with your children.
- You make too many rules — Rules are good to a degree, but if your child has no autonomy in their life, it’s time to reconsider some of your rules. Backing off on one or two at a time will help your child adapt and learn how to make decisions for themselves.
- Your threats are too severe — Many parents make threats to get their children to listen to their instructions. However, if your threats are too severe for the actions required, you may need to scale back and consider using other methods of helping your child see the importance of obeying.
- Rules that dictate personality — Your child has a unique personality and should be allowed to showcase it. While rules regarding safety and treating others with respect are useful, rules about what your child can wear or who they can spend time with in general may be overstepping, unless there is a safety issue at hand.
- You express conditional love — Parents should love their children no matter what. If you are threatening to withhold that love, you are likely too strict.
- Your child leaves you out — Most children love to share their accomplishments with their parents. However, if you are too strict with your rules, your child may be less eager to share and may leave you out of important events in their lives.
- You forbid your child from doing things — As a parent, it’s your job to help guide your child through the decisions in life. Instead of telling your child he is forbidden to do something, you may want to say you would prefer they not do it or suggest something else.
- Your aren’t flexible — Parents often have rules for a reason, but reasonable parents may rethink rules if their child brings up valid points. However, strict parents won’t bend on the rules, no matter what.
Strict Parents Quotes
Learning what others have said about strict parents can help parents see their mistakes and correct them before it’s too late.
- Jodi Foster stated, “Love and respect are the most important aspects of parenting and of all relationships.”
- Joseph Jackson explains why some parents are strict when he said, “In being strict, you were able to control.”
- Jackson Brown expressed the importance of being fair when he stated, “Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you.”
Understanding why strict parents often end up raising children who aren’t as well-behaved as they wanted can help parents realize the importance of balancing strict rules with loving guidance. This combination will help children grow up the way a parent wants.
When children are under strict rules as they grow up and nothing changes, they are much more likely to rebel and won’t know how to successfully interact with others in a family environment, as friends or even in the workplace. To ensure parents give their children the best chances of success, it’s important to realize being strict with everything isn’t the right choice. Instead, it’s important to encourage children to become independent individuals who are likely to know what they want. With the right steps, you will be able to guide your child along the right path without making them feel smothered.