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Hold On Loosely: The Positives and Negatives Of Overprotecting Your Brood

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By Mia Bolaris-Forget

No matter what ethnic or cultural background you come from there’s likely some sort of joke or stereotype about the doting mom. From baby monitors to “tracking devices” such as cell phones and the such, parents are doing their best to protect their kids from the “big, bad” world. And, while there is certainly an advantage in some arenas, some experts suggest it can have some “harmful” drawbacks.

Experts note that while modern “super-moms” who push themselves to push their own limits, and, almost without complaint, restraint, whining or emotion are trying to give their children all the luxuries this world has to offer, sparing them the hardships and disappointment they once faced, they are actually doing them a disservice. In fact, painting and creating a picture-perfect world for youngsters is doing little to prepare them for adulthood and the real hardships and disappointments the real world has to offer. And, that means they won’t be prepared or know how to handle themselves when real challenges, mom can’t fix, come their way.

Allowing kids to deal with discouragement and finding an adequate way to deal and cope is a much better method, according to experts. Plus, this type of over-protective “natural” nurturing can take an emotional (and sometimes) physical toll on all family members, especially mother and child, and especially if and when the youngsters attempts to assert any independence or individuality.

Experts add that rushing in to placate your child or substituting something good for something “bad” that he or she experienced rod your child of the ‘revelation” that things will be alright without your intervention and without a substitute. Plus, often times, the person busy being the “rescuer” is in for HUGE disappointment when others don’t come to his or her aid, when they need it and when he or she can’t rescue him or her self. Not to mention that over-extending yourself to meet all the needs of others can leave you tired and irritable.

So, while it is important, if not imperative to keep on “top of your child”, showing love and support and knowing what he or she is doing, with whom, and being available to listen and to lean on, it’s equally as important to access the situation and to know when to back off and let your child figure things out on his or her own. It will be a growth experience for the both of you

Long Island Family Life & Parenting Articles > Hold On Loosely: The Positives and Negatives Of Overprotecting Your Brood

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