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Different parenting styles and how they affect a child’s relationship with others




The patterns of parenting styles have an immense impact in a child’s behavioural, emotional and psychological relationship with others. In fact, parenting styles affect everything from how a child weighs to how much she feels about herself. In fact, parenting styles affect everything from how a child weighs to how much she feels about herself. Some parents are unaware of the role they play in moulding a child’s behaviour and outward reception of situations. Due to their ignorance they contribute to the development of uncapable youths who are not emotional ready for responsibilities.

Good parenting is a type of parenting that prepares a child for the unknown future and prepares him to meet the demands of a changing culture and environment. Temperaments of the parents and the children affect style of parenting and the mother and father made the differ in style as well (Belsky:2005 cited in Joseph & John:2008)

Research has it that there are four types of parenting styles and these four different types have different influences in shaping a child.

  • Authoritarian
  • Authoritative
  • Permissive
  • Uninvolved

Authoritarian style of parenting

This parenting style adopts strict upbringing without regards to the emotions of the child. The parents see their own opinion as final and do not give a listening ear to the child. These parents are perfectionists, they frown at every inadequacies found in a child and are not slow in scolding a child. They show no emotions except anger and disappointment. They can be likened to the biblical phrase of “spare the rod and spoil the child.”

Characteristics of Authoritarian parents

  1. They lay down so much rules and expectations for a child to follow and spend a lot of time punishing a child
  2. They love to be in charge
  3. They are very strict in their parenting approach
  4. They do not communicate with children
  5. They are somewhat aloof around their children and do not want to appear ‘soft’ around their them. They hate to be seen as vulnerable by their children.

How this affects your relationship

Children who grow up in this style grow up feeling insecure and low self-esteemed. They will always want the approval of their partners and they connect approval with love. So because of this, they will always want to be perfect for their partners; be the ideal wife or husband. They apologize often and they aim to please.
“Rather than being excited when they have completed something nice, adults who grew up under an authoritarian parent begin to worry they forgot something and start inspecting their work for flaws. This could also make it hard for their partners to even give them small notes in the relationship because it triggers the enormous fear and self-loathing they used to feel around their parents” says Julia Austin, relationship writer.

Authoritative style of parenting

This style of parenting is regarded as the most favorable because it adopts the interaction of open communication, rules and consequences, boundaries maturity and the necessary social skills for healthy relationship. Authoritative parenting is characterized by reasonable demands and responsiveness. Parents who exhibit the style listen to the kids and provide love and warmth in addition to limits and fair discipline.

Characteristics of Authoritative parents

  1. They are kind and empathetic
  2. They encourage and support the children
  3. They allow the children to express opinions and discuss options
  4. They nurture independent reasoning
  5. They place limits, consequences and expectations on their children’s behaviour but also tend to be flexible

How this affects your relationship

Children who grew up in this parenting style tend to have happier dispositions. They grow up emotionally matured, self-confidence and independent. Because of these children were raised in an environment that provides both security and confidence, they grow up to be highly self esteemed and are able to have healthy relationships with others. When in a romantic relationship they know what they want and how to get it, they support their partners and always give listening ears. They are so emotionally secured in the relationship that when it’s time to redress they are always available.

Permissive style of parenting

Just like its name indicates, this style of parenting has little or no rules and expectations from children.  “Most times the parents are loving and express caring about their their children.They do not see their children as mature and capable enough to carry out certain tasks or responsibilities that require self-control.” They are extraordinarily lenient and rarely punish their children for wrongdoing. They spare the rod and spoil the child. They do not put down rules and don’t expect anything from their children, they prefer the children to figure things out themselves.

Characteristics of Permissive parents

  1. They try as hard as possible to avoid conflict and confrontation with their children so when faced with one they compromise.
  2. They allow the children to disobey rules without any consequences.
  3. They spend too much time bribing, over negotiating and over compromising with their children.

How it affects your relationship

Since children who grew up in this parenting style grew up getting everything they wanted, they become insensitive to the needs of others. They become that person who never apologize to their partners and who think they know what is best for everyone. A child from this home may have problems with relationships and struggle with lack of social skills. According to Dr Gail Gross, Human Behaviour, Parenting and Education Expert, “a child who is raised without structure may have difficulty self-managing his behaviour. Freedom Without limits can be destructive to a child’s development; without consequences children do not have a sense of boundaries. As a result, the child from a permissive home will seek structure to help them feel valued, validated and secure. This child often lacks responsibility, has difficulty with boundaries and commitment and is unaware of the importance of significant consequences.”

Uninvolved style of parenting

Parents of this type of style are basically uninterested in the overall life of their children. They prefer other social activities with other people than spending time with their kids. They see spending time with their children as waste of time and unproductive. The uninvolved parent is neglectful to the physical and emotional needs, safety and care of his child. According to  Diana Beaumund cited in Deeksha Awasthi’s ‘How does uninvolved parenting affect your child’, neglectful parenting or uninvolved parenting have the least amount of involvement or response towards their children’s needs. They just provide the most basic of facilities but no room or opportunity for recreational and developmental activities. They make no demands from their kids and are emotionally detached from them. This parents are extremely dismissive and indifferent or even oblivious to their children’s needs.

Characteristics of these parents

  1. They are emotionally detached from their children
  2. They are too busy with their own issues pushing aside their children’s needs
  3. They do not give supervision
  4. They do not express love
  5. They do not give expectation or rule because they are not always available
  6. They prefer to be in other places than with their children
  7. They often go from home and leave their children to cater for themselves
  8. They are not aware or interested in those people in their children’s life.

How it affects your relationship

This is the most dangerous of all kinds of parenting style because it affects a child’s sense of self value, self-esteem and well-being. As an adult who grew up in an uninvolved environment you grow to be distrustful in your romantic relationship and with others. Since you grew up taking on responsibilities that were far too early this made you mature than your age, so you might develop certain expectations people in your peer group might not be able to meet and this leads to problem with intimacy and friendship with peers. Also, since you never had strong support from anyone you might become emotionally weak and needy and fail constantly in relationships.

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