Promoting and supporting the physical, emotional, social and intellectual development of a child from being an infant to becoming an adult is known as parenting. Rather than referring to the biological relationship, it refers to the process of raising a child.
Psychologists have identified four different models of parenting, the use of which one depends on the family situation. The four styles range from very authoritative to more permissive with the more conventional models falling somewhere in between.
Authoritarian parenting is a strict approach to parenting in which parental rules are made and children are expected to conform to them with little open discussion between parent and child. Parents who take this approach expect a great deal from their children and offer no explanation for their rules and directives. Authoritarian parents tend to respond less to their children’s needs and would rather spank a child than talk about the problem.
A more balanced approach to parenting is the authoritative approach that is more child-centered in nature. Parents who are authoritative understand their children’s feelings and help them find appropriate solutions to solve problems. There is more of a give-and-take between parents and children and a more warm and nurturing attitude. Punishment is still given based on parental rules but in this approach parents provide an explanation for their punishment.
Indulgent parenting is more permissive in nature with few rules or expectations for the children. Parents are very nurturing and responsive to children’s needs and are very involved with them. Children of indulgent parents are not required to behave in a proper fashion and sometimes become spoiled, in either a good way or a bad way.
Neglectful parenting is at the opposite end of the spectrum from authoritarian parenting and is characterized by parents who show little warmth for their children and are not involved in their children’s life. No rules or limits are set and thus there are no punishments. Children’s emotions and opinions are often dismissed yet parents still provide basic needs for their children such as food, clothing and shelter. Children of neglectful parents may become socially withdrawn, impacting relationships later on in life.