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Elementary School Kids Elementary School Kids

Helicopter Parents (related to another post/reply)- why do you care?

 I've seen that phrase on here & I've read the post about it but I'm wondering why do people care?  It's not your kid.  It sounds like a lot of judgment when some people see it & people comment about it, but why do you care how so much how someone else raises their kid?  How is it important to you if someone goes & feeds their child or watches them play at school?  Or whatever it is they're doing that's considered helicopter parenting.  What effect does that have on your day?  I mean apparently it's a good conversation topic to criticize other parents instead of attempting to find out why they're acting that way (i.e., mental or physical limitations/issues) & act like you're better than them.  But what impact does it have on your life & the lives of your children?  Some of you talk about the type of kids that are being raised but again how does that effect your family?  So you raised your child & weren't a helicopter parent does that hurt your kids because society now has those kids?

And I always find it interesting if a teacher on here complains.  So you complain about the helicopter parents but then if a parent isn't involved in their child's education & blows you off then you complain as well.  Seems to me you'd want a parent interested, even if overly so, than one who doesn't give a crap. 

by on May. 2, 2012 at 12:33 PM
Replies (111-120):
steelcrazy
by Emerald Member on May. 3, 2012 at 8:52 AM

I'm not sure what this has to do with the subject being discussed in this post.  We are talking about helicopter parents here not if schools are better at raising kids than parents.  If you would like to discuss that, feel free to start your own post about that subject.

Quoting heathercm26:

Wow...dont you all know by now that an institution will be much more successful in raising our kids then we will ever be. The school always knows best. They know your child better than you do and can make better decosuons than you can. Obviously kids are meant to be raised in a "herd"...you know...like in a classroom.


 

I'm feeling wicked!

steelcrazy
by Emerald Member on May. 3, 2012 at 9:05 AM
1 mom liked this

I have a lot of guilt over my parenting decisions, but it is guilt over hovering over my oldest child for far too long.  It took a very wise kindergarten teacher to help me see the error of my ways and begin to reform.  She made me see that I wasn't helping him at all by doing things for him that he was quite able to do for himself.  I'm still not sure why I hovered and don't know if I ever will.  I have a few theories though.  It could be due to my first children dying shortly after birth (twins born premature), it could be that he was my first child and my parents' first grandchild, it could also be that he was premature, or even that he is an Aspie, but most likely it is a combo of all of those things.  So yes, I do carry a lot of guilt over being a helicopter and absolutely no guilt over shutting down the rotors and letting my boys grow up and experience things and do things on their own and have time when I don't have to be right there every step of the way.  It is amazing how my oldest thrived when I stopped hovering.

Quoting Spectrummom311:

I really would like to know the answer too. I am as hands on as I can be with both my kids. I have one child who is on the Autism Spectrum. It really is none of anyone's business how another parent chides to raise their child. I often think maybe there is guilt involved with the people who aren't as hands on and wish they could be.


mjande4
by Platinum Member on May. 3, 2012 at 9:13 AM

It's awesome that you can and do share this, because hopefully it will help other moms see the light.  You have a lot of good insight!!

Quoting steelcrazy:

I have a lot of guilt over my parenting decisions, but it is guilt over hovering over my oldest child for far too long.  It took a very wise kindergarten teacher to help me see the error of my ways and begin to reform.  She made me see that I wasn't helping him at all by doing things for him that he was quite able to do for himself.  I'm still not sure why I hovered and don't know if I ever will.  I have a few theories though.  It could be due to my first children dying shortly after birth (twins born premature), it could be that he was my first child and my parents' first grandchild, it could also be that he was premature, or even that he is an Aspie, but most likely it is a combo of all of those things.  So yes, I do carry a lot of guilt over being a helicopter and absolutely no guilt over shutting down the rotors and letting my boys grow up and experience things and do things on their own and have time when I don't have to be right there every step of the way.  It is amazing how my oldest thrived when I stopped hovering.

Quoting Spectrummom311:

I really would like to know the answer too. I am as hands on as I can be with both my kids. I have one child who is on the Autism Spectrum. It really is none of anyone's business how another parent chides to raise their child. I often think maybe there is guilt involved with the people who aren't as hands on and wish they could be.



Traci_Momof2
by Silver Member on May. 3, 2012 at 9:54 AM
2 moms liked this

OK, I know this post got a bit off track so let's see if we can get it back on track.

Helicopter parent is a style of parenting.  It generally can't be defined by one single action by a parent, it's rather an overall style of parenting.  However, individual actions can point to an overall style.  Using your example, if I pick out my 5 year olds clothes and that the only helicopter-type thing I do for my child, then I am not a helicopter parent.  As you said, perhaps there is a specific reason for that one thing.  However, if I pick out my 5 yo's clothes AND cut his food for him AND walk him to the classroom every day AND never let play out in the yard alone AND shadow him all over every inch of the playground AND ... then I would certainly call that a helicopter parent.  All of those things together show a pattern of doing everything for the child and never letting the child do for themselves.  It's also like others mentioned and never letting the child experience failure.  Failure is how they learn to do it right the next time and how they learn coping skills.  Failure is a very important life lesson.

Now, on a place like CM, if I see a parent mention one thing they do that seems helicopterish, I may comment something like "sounds like you are a helicopter parent".  That's not necessarily a judgement (at least not in the negative connotation) and it doesn't mean "you are", it just means based on what we know it sounds like you are or that you lean that way.  It's then up to you to decide how you want to take that.  You talk about moms on here getting criticized.  What I see more of is moms saying they are being criticized when really I see no criticism in the post they are referring to.  I see moms on here too sensitive to a little healthy criticism of their parenting and a little suggestion that perhaps there is a better way.  Remember, criticism is not necessarily a bad thing just like failure is not necessarily a bad thing.

So I guess then my question to you is, why do you care if some moms receive a little bit of healthy criticism for their helicoptering ways?

Quoting mommy2cristian:

 that's true but how it's used on this forum or on cafemom isn't what you're talking about.  moms on here get criticized for picking or laying out their children's clothes while in K or 1st grade.  it's true that by a certain age they should be able to do things but again that's when they're older not when they're little.  sure you would expect a 8th grader to be able to navigate registration to a certain degree for example but to criticize a mom at this point when her child can't even cook their own food is ridiculous.  and by that i mean i wouldn't expect my 5yo to go in the kitchen, turn on the stove, & start cutting vegetables.  there are still certain things at this age you have to do or help with or watch over.  teenagers & adults should be able to do things & it should only be a concern then not now.  some overprotective parents at a young age do back off as they get older & make them do things for themselves so just because you see it now doesn't mean they're helicoptering or that they'll continue. 

Quoting Traci_Momof2:

I'm with steelcrazy and barabell on this one.  My concern comes in the form of concern for society as a whole.  As more and more parents buy into the fear (perpetuated by our media) and become helicopter parents, more and more kids are growing up to be adults who can't do a damn thing for themselves.  They aren't contributing members of society and rather are a drain on society and our resources.  That will affect me and my kids.

My sister works at a university and she sees the effect of helicopter parents on the students at the university.  They don't know how to do their own registrations, fill out their own forms, go to a laundromat and do their own damn laundry.  They are college students - ADULTS - and they don't know how to do basic life tasks without Mummy or Daddy holding their hand.  Tell me how that's possibly good for society.

I got my very first job when I was 16.  My mom never went with me to the job interview.  Sure, she coached me a bit at home before-hand.  But she never went to my job interviews, never filled out my job applications, never "took" me to college, never did my college registrations, never called my college.  Those were my responsibility, not hers.

You ask why it matters at the grade school age?  Because that's where it starts.  If you want a college student who can do their own registrations, you need a grade school student who can be responsible for his own homework.  If you want a college student who remembers to get to class on time, you need a grade school student who can get up and get dressed on their own in the morning.  You don't just suddenly grant responsibility on the 18th birthday.  It is slowly given bit by bit over the entire 18 years so that once they hit 18 and graduate HS they can hit the ground running with no issues.  The responsibility isn't overwhelming because they've already had it for some time.

 


Traci_Momof2
by Silver Member on May. 3, 2012 at 10:03 AM

Yup.  My school does "lunch with your child" month.  Each month is for a different grade and parents are invited to come have lunch with their child for one day.  I did that for my son, once in Kindy and once in 1st grade.  Sure he was distracted at times, being silly with friends, probably showing off in front of mom a bit (you know how kids are) and wasn't focusing on his meal like he should've been.  I gave him a couple quiet, friendly, verbal reminders to eat and that was the end of my involvement in him eating.  FTMP, I just wanted to enjoy my time with my son in a capacity I don't normally get to enjoy.  Every other day it's on him to make sure he eats so that day was no different.  It would've NEVER occurred to me to pick up his fork and put a bite of food in his mouth for him, not even just the last two bites.  When he is at school, that is his responsibility, not mine.  Not even when I am there with him.

FTR, my youngest will enter Kindy this fall and I worry a bit about him eating lunch at school.  He is a slow eater and easily distracted from the task at hand.  But he will have to learn.  I can't, won't and shouldn't be there with him every day to make sure he eats.  He will learn that lesson quickly in the form of hunger.  One or two days of hunger from not eating their lunch is not going to kill them.

Quoting steelcrazy:

Well of course you touched a nerve.  You are basically calling her a helEcopter for feeding her elementary aged child who is quite able to feed himself.  I can't say that I've ever seen a parent of an elementary aged child feeding him and would imagine that I'd crack up at the sight of it.  Then again, I don't see the point to doing something for a child that they can and should be doing for themselves.  Independance is a very good thing for everyone involved.

Quoting Cindy18:

I asked the same question and the OP just got defensive and didn't answer.

I think we have touched a nerve.

Quoting mjande4:

I just want to be clear. Are you saying YOU actually feed your kid AT SCHOOL in front of his other classmates!? 

 




Traci_Momof2
by Silver Member on May. 3, 2012 at 10:06 AM


Quoting heathercm26:

Wow...dont you all know by now that an institution will be much more successful in raising our kids then we will ever be. The school always knows best. They know your child better than you do and can make better decosuons than you can. Obviously kids are meant to be raised in a "herd"...you know...like in a classroom.

**sarcasm duly noted**

You know, to that I would say if you can't trust your school to teach your child what they need to know while they are there then you probably shouldn't be sending your child there in the first place.  What's the point in sending your child to a school and then demanding that said school does every little single thing your way?  Might as well just homeschool then.

There is a huge difference between being involved and being controlling.

pinkcsmtlgy
by Bronze Member on May. 3, 2012 at 10:14 AM

This.

Quoting Siannashell:

I agree with you. There are a lot of judgmental parents on here. But I enjoy the moms who are helpful and that's there only intention. I also believe some people "helicopter parent" simply because they are involved. And that's ok.


mjande4
by Platinum Member on May. 3, 2012 at 10:27 AM

EXACTLY!!  The purpose of being a parent is to prepare your kids to eventually be on their own.  They have to LEARN from their mistakes.  If you NEVER allow them to make a mistake, i.e. not taking the time to eat during the allotted time period, they are not going to learn for themselves.

Quoting Traci_Momof2:

Yup.  My school does "lunch with your child" month.  Each month is for a different grade and parents are invited to come have lunch with their child for one day.  I did that for my son, once in Kindy and once in 1st grade.  Sure he was distracted at times, being silly with friends, probably showing off in front of mom a bit (you know how kids are) and wasn't focusing on his meal like he should've been.  I gave him a couple quiet, friendly, verbal reminders to eat and that was the end of my involvement in him eating.  FTMP, I just wanted to enjoy my time with my son in a capacity I don't normally get to enjoy.  Every other day it's on him to make sure he eats so that day was no different.  It would've NEVER occurred to me to pick up his fork and put a bite of food in his mouth for him, not even just the last two bites.  When he is at school, that is his responsibility, not mine.  Not even when I am there with him.

FTR, my youngest will enter Kindy this fall and I worry a bit about him eating lunch at school.  He is a slow eater and easily distracted from the task at hand.  But he will have to learn.  I can't, won't and shouldn't be there with him every day to make sure he eats.  He will learn that lesson quickly in the form of hunger.  One or two days of hunger from not eating their lunch is not going to kill them.

Quoting steelcrazy:

Well of course you touched a nerve.  You are basically calling her a helEcopter for feeding her elementary aged child who is quite able to feed himself.  I can't say that I've ever seen a parent of an elementary aged child feeding him and would imagine that I'd crack up at the sight of it.  Then again, I don't see the point to doing something for a child that they can and should be doing for themselves.  Independance is a very good thing for everyone involved.

Quoting Cindy18:

I asked the same question and the OP just got defensive and didn't answer.

I think we have touched a nerve.

Quoting mjande4:

I just want to be clear. Are you saying YOU actually feed your kid AT SCHOOL in front of his other classmates!? 






culinaryqueen
by Member on May. 3, 2012 at 11:05 AM
1 mom liked this

 I have seen parents that in my opinion just don't really care especially when he was in K.  I do not see anything wrong with being a protective parent, I believe that you will instill these traits into your little ones and once they grow up and have children of their own that I would think of course that my son will do things differently and this is totally fine but with the way how today's world is compared to when I was his age todays times are really scary, as parents we have to be on guard for anything and everything. So to any teachers that feel like this is a problem then I think they need  to stop andre think if this is really the right career for them.  The teacher's at the school where my son goes are awesome, he is is in regular ed so he does not have any teachers that are special ed. I belive there is nothing wrong with it at all.

Quoting mommy2cristian:

 (sorry.  i meant to add this as well.)  and in your case it's different but people aren't going to take the time to figure it out before jumping in to criticize you.  there are kids out there who have sensory issues or have high functioning autism but still have certain issues.  you have to be one. 

there's a K teacher at my son's school who hates having parents at the school.  she wants you to drop them off & pick them up.  that's it.  i always found it interesting when i went to pick up my son's friend after school & she'd talk to me about his issues.  huh.  well i'm not his parent so why are you talking to me & why do you care since you don't want his mom here to help with any issues?  oh wait but you do want her there when it suits your purpose.  so you bitch if someone's there & when a kid is messing up you want to bitch if they're not because it makes your job harder.  can't have it both ways.   

Quoting culinaryqueen:

 I have never heard this phrase, but I am a helicopter parent for the majority of the school year because my son is Autistic and I just need to make sure that goes where he needs to be, at the beginning of the school year they locked down the school because my son went missing after recess and they found him hiding under a sink in the hallway, he said that he was scared of a man like a maintenance man I spoke with my son and the school and he never came in contact with this man it was just something about the way he looked and his uniform that scared my son so after that incident  we had many issues at the beginning of the year with my son being overstimulated with everything going on ( he is in first grade) in August you bet I was more of a helicopter parent more than usual, as the school year has gone on, as the year has progressed we never had an incident again, his school is always locked and there are cameras everywhere, so we were assured that he was safe and could not leave the school property but even though there is only a few more weeks left I am still a helicopter parent and I know that I always will be.

 

 

MamaSulli2005
by on May. 3, 2012 at 11:12 AM
1 mom liked this
I'm not a helicopter parent when it comes to school because I can't be there anyhow, heck I rarely even volunteer, I have four kids, who's gonna watch the 3 while I'm hovering over the other at school? Anyhow...I do hover at the park. For safety reasons and the fact that I'm super paranoid they'll be taken. Im always thinking how will I be able to save my kid if someone approaches them on the other side of the playground while I'm pushin the baby in the swing...and so on. Sure our kids need independence but for me it's a safety issue. they're too little to fight anyone off.
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