Baunmrind did a research on the types of parenting styles to bring up a child and suggested three styles. The styles include authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive parenting. In her opinion, parents should adopt authoritative parenting. She argues that this style can help instill discipline in children and enable them to live successfully in the society. The paper examines these parenting styles focusing on how they impact on children. It examines the correlation between Baunmrind’s conclusions about the effects of parenting styles on children and my personal observation about the same.
Different parents utilize different parenting styles to help their children develop. Some of the reasons for these variations may include variation in the family size, culture, socio-economic status, and personality. According to Baumrind, there are three parenting styles authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive parenting. Normally, parents do utilize only one among the three parenting styles. She classified them along two dimensions, warmth and control, meaning responsiveness and demand respectively (Coomarsingh, 2011).
My father and mother used the authoritative parenting style to bring me up. In authoritative parenting style, they established rules and guidelines to me and my siblings. They applied methods of high control and high warmth at the same time. I agree with Greenspan (2006) who notes that the style is more democratic than authoritarian parenting. This was demonstrated through my parents. They were responsive and gave us the opportunity to ask questions and make suggestions. Our parents were not restrictive and intrusive but assertive. Their disciplinary methods were not necessarily punitive but supportive. From experience, do believe that this style of parenting breeds a child who is socially responsible, cooperative, as well as self regulated.
One day I went to a neighboring home where there was a party. Disco was on, and people were dancing. My dad passed by and saw me. I thought he would punish me, conversely he did not. He advised me that it would be better take much of my time studying rather than waste time in a disco. He further explained that if I studied well, then I would be able to buy my own music system and whenever I felt like dancing. He cautioned that if I did not excel in academics then I would lead a miserable life. After this conversation, he released me to go back to the party, but I decided to return home together with him. Two months later a friend suggested me to accompany him to a night club. I gave up contrary to my wish. The following day, I was not able to do my chores effectively. When my father realized it was because I had been out the previous night, he punished me thoroughly.
Authoritative parenting style is too static to enable flexible and effective management of the resulting complexity (Coomarsingh, 2011). In my opinion parents will not always adhere to one parenting style. For instance, my father primarily utilized authoritative parenting, but I feel that sometimes he was an authoritarian parent. He would never allow us to watch television at all. Whenever we questioned his decision on this issue, he either threatened to punish us or said watching television would harm our eyes. Additionally, I believe that my parents gave me a very good foundation and closely monitored my academic and spiritual life. However, I tend to feel they were more permissive in regards to social aspects of my life.
According to Baumrind, children who undergo authoritative parenting usually become happy, capable as well as successful (Greenspan, 2006). I tend to agree with Baumrind argument, more so if I consider my case. However, it is a difficult task establishing the actual link between later behaviors of children and the actions of their parents. This is in consideration that some children do grow up in totally different environments but end up having very similar behaviors. On the contrary, some children, who are raised up in the same home, by the same parents, differ in their personalities. This has been explained genetically.
In conclusion, as opposed to authoritative parenting, parents should adopt harmonious parenting, which considers three domains of discipline. In addition to control and mitigate the process of bringing up, a harmonious parenting will include tolerance. This is important since any parent who strictly utilizes authoritative parenting always sets a limit every time an opportunity presents itself, thereby performing poorly in tolerance.