Is It Okay to Let Your Child Fail (or Stumble)?

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screen-shot-2016-10-17-at-9-52-04-am        Check out this article from CNN’s “Brutually Honest” series which tackles provocative parenting questions. An excerpt:

Many of us good, well-meaning parents are scared of our children “not being right all the time” and are motivated by a desire to buck up our kids’ self-esteem when we’re actually doing more harm than good, according to Jessica Lahey, author of the book “The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed”

        “Every single time we turn around and say, ‘I’ll just do that for you’ or ‘Here, let me help you with that,’ we are saying to them, ‘I don’t think you can do that for yourself,’ ” said Lahey…“And that is really damaging over time. We create a really helpless culture of kids so that now when I talk to college professors, they say these kids show up to college unable to handle anything on their own.”
        Part of the reason we step in, says Lahey, is because we want our kids to love us.  “We want to feel needed, and so when we take that homework assignment to school for them and rescue them, we feel we get to check that box off today. ‘I was a good parent,’ ” said Lahey.
        The research backs up just how dangerous our inability to let our children stumble and figure things out on their own can be for them as young adults.  A 2013 study in the Journal of Child and Family Studies found that helicopter parenting can lead to anxiety and depression in college students and decreased feelings of autonomy and competence.  Another investigation…by the University of Arizona, found that adults who were over-parented have an exaggerated sense of entitlement and more doubt about their ability to overcome challenges.
Posted in 12-14 - Chris Ambroso