“If I help you do your homework or activities, am I doing it wrong?” A specialist explains how to identify when we are taking away children’s autonomy and how to provide adequate parenting.
On many occasions, parents tend to overprotect their children due to fear or insecurity caused by different scenarios in the child’s life. However, a rigid dependency can harm your personal growth.
How do I know if I am making my child too dependent on me?
Gabriela Gonzáles, a specialist in effective parenting, points out that parents often present certain behaviors guided by fear or distrust of their own experiences, which ends up becoming a habit.
Lack of patience: Being a parent involves taking the time to guide and teach step by step, so that the child can gradually progress when performing an activity. Even by dividing the actions into small steps, we get the minor to internalize it much better.
Avoid saying “don’t rush, get over there” and do everything for them. Not only can you take responsibility away from them, but it also affects their self-esteem and their ability to solve problems.
We transmit our fears: In risky circumstances, parents are accustomed to act with desperation or fear by saying phrases like “don’t get up there, you’re going to fall”, assuming an event that hasn’t happened yet.
Therefore, it is first important to establish limits, rules and transmit clear messages so that the child can make their own decisions safely.
Mistrust: By telling them “leave that, I’ll do it”, children understand that there is no confidence in their own abilities. Children need to be given the opportunity to be useful and needed so that they can deal with greater responsibilities as they grow older.
“Limiting their independence damages their self-esteem and their sense of personal worth. Help him feel that he can take charge of his life from a young age”, recommends the specialist in this publication.
What to do for a child to develop independence from her?
Gonzáles suggests that parents try to take into account the following recommendations:
- Assign them tasks according to their age and ability, even more so if they are eager to help. For example, let me help you with simple household chores.
- Give her time, monitor her progress, and provide support only if she needs it.
- It is important to let go of perfectionism. “If she made the bed, respect how she turned out. Gradually it will improve”, suggests the specialist.
- Trust and sow trust. For example, with phrases like “good job, did you like how you did it?” or “tell me what was the most difficult”.
She remembers that when children are young they really want to discover the world and parents should not restrict that desire. On the contrary, they must provide them with security mechanisms and establish adequate limits, which will help them to be more autonomous.