Skip to comments.Are you a wimpy parent? Check for these 7 signs
Posted on 11/08/2010 3:00:31 PM PST by Stand Watch Listen
I have evaluated numerous children whose only problems are that they live with loving and dedicated parents who are wimps. There is no psychological test yet to diagnose this disorder, but here is how you can assess yourself and perhaps avoid a visit to a therapists office.
1. Are you more concerned about your childrens feelings than their behaviors? Wimpy parents care excessively about making their children feel comfortable. While feelings are important, the real world judges us all on actions. Wimpy parents are reluctant to require their youngsters to do anything that may feel uncomfortable. One parent told me that she thought her overweight 7-year-old would benefit from playing recreational sports but the mom didnt want to push her child into this activity because her child may not be able to keep up with the other youngsters.
2. Do you praise your children excessively? Wimpy parents make too big a deal of their childrens minor accomplishments. They often tell their kids how special they are, and inadvertently make their children addicted to praise and recognition. These kids have a hard time functioning without constant reassurance and become overly dependent upon the approval of others.
3. Do you give in on your discipline? Wimpy parents have good intentions but lack the self-confidence to follow through after disciplining their children. The kids recognize and take advantage of this weakness. I never argue back after my mom grounds me, one 10-year-old told me. I just wait a few hours, whine a lot and shell eventually let me do what I want.
4. Do you feel guilty after disciplining your child? Strong parents see discipline as a way to teach their youngsters good behavior, and know that they are helping their kids. Wimpy parents feel guilty that they are hurting their children by depriving them of some privilege.
5. Are you inconsistent in your application of discipline? Because they care excessively about their kids feelings, wimpy parents avoid making tough decisions. These parents develop intricate pseudo-explanations to justify their inconsistencies. I can tell when my child had a bad day at school and I probably let her talk back to me too much on those occasions admitted one wimpy parent.
6. Do you talk endlessly to convince your children that your discipline is fair? Strong parents have no need for children to agree with family rules and consequences. They are confident and comfortable with their decisions and enforce them in a calm and reasonable manner. They acknowledge their childrens feelings, but dont engage in debate or discussion over what is right.
7. Do you typically place your childrens needs above those of you and your spouse? Wimpy parents feel insecure in their relationships with their children. In this kids first type of family, personal and marital needs are of lower priority. The kids rule and infer an unrealistic sense of importance and power from the way they are treated.
Gregory Ramey, Ph.D., is a child psychologist and vice president for outpatient services at The Childrens Medical Center of Dayton. For more of his columns, visit www.childrensdayton.org.
Hmmmmm...does the term 'helecopter/hovering' parents come to mind??
How NOT to raise a Liberal!
She's raising her grandson after the loss of his parents and says she just can't bring herself to be 'mean' to the boy. Fact is, raising him to be such a monster is mean, but she just doesn't get it.
I wasn’t a perfect parent, but I doubt my kid would have accused me of being wimpy.
I need to send this to a good friend.
Hmmmm. My score:
6. Hell No
I guess that’s why people are always telling me how wonderfully behaved my children are, and how did I do it?
I just taught my kids that if they ever grew up and voted for a liberal that they'd go straight to hell when they died.
Debate and discussion are only useful in dealing with rational beings.
Small children are not entirely rational.
7 no answers here...
And my daughter graduated from University of Vermont as a right winger...how great is that!
That list describes probably 97 out of 100 “parents”.
7 no’s for us.
Yes. We want them to feel really really bad when they misbehave and we want them to feel that our punishment was too harsh so they won't do it again.
2. Do you praise your children excessively?
Yes, of course. When they perform great temper tantrums we tell them we appreciate their great performance and try to give them tips.
3. Do you give in on your discipline?
All the time. When they complain about our punishment we make it worse until they stop.
4. Do you feel guilty after disciplining your child?
Often. We wonder where we might have shown that we would have allowed their bad behavior. Surely we must have messed up in the past in order for them to think they could have gotten away with something today.
5. Are you inconsistent in your application of discipline? ,
Absolutely. We apply different standards to each of our children depending on what we think each child's needs are.
6. Do you talk endlessly to convince your children that your discipline is fair?
Yep. We endlessly explain to our kids that life isn't fair and neither are your parents. We choose a punishment that we think is appropriate regardless of whether its fair.
7. Do you typically place your childrens needs above those of you and your spouse?
Yes, we will see that they have their basic needs tended to but we will never let our children ruin our peace or allow them to control our home.
When I was very young and starting my family, my father and I had a talk about raising kids. Since they don’t come with an instruction book, I was looking for answers. One word came out of his mouth.... “consistent”. When I talked to my mother she said “Once your father made up his mind about something, (concerning me) have you ever seen him change his mind?” There’s a lot to say about tough love.
does this list also apply to parents of cats :-).
I think the only thing I could add to consistent is united front. Otherwise, perfect advice.
United front is huge. I’ve seen many a kid try to “divide and conquer” their 2 parents by playing one against the other...usually because they know that one of the parents will cave. This not only hurts the child, but usually end up hurting the marriage.
Besides united front and consistency, I also am a firm believer in being a role model/moral compass for your children by “walking the walk”. That seems pretty obvious to most parents and I’m sure that most freepers live this way, but I am always shocked at how many parents will act like total jackasses and then be shocked when their kids turn into jackasses.
Also a good point. I’ve been surprised recently when my kids have told me what good parents they think we were. I felt (at the time) like we were muddling thru. :)