Strict and overprotective parents are problematic (Opinion)

Strict parenting is not beneficial when it comes to raising kids


Sarah Post

Parenting styles that are strict and overprotective have negative effects on kids and teenagers. This parenting does not help anyone.

Strict parenting definitely has a huge impact on kids — but not in the intended, good way.

Strict parenting does not develop a healthy relationship; in a healthy relationship, there should always be trust. Trust goes both ways and when parents appear to be strict it shows the child that they don’t trust them, leaving the relationship with uncertainty.

Strict parents most of (if not all of) the time have unrealistic expectations, and since kids are who they are, they’ll end up messing up. Sometimes kids don’t make good choices, therefore the only way for someone to learn how to make good choices is by messing up. Strict parents seem to have a fear of their kids making bad decisions, but when we go back to the idea of trust, parents need to understand that their kids are going to make mistakes and that they will learn from their decisions and make better decisions in the future. And the reality is, strict parenting will not prevent any of that.

Strict parenting does not teach kids to make good decisions, but it does teach them how to be good liars and sneaky in difficult situations. When parents are strict, children will start to do things behind their backs instead of being safe and communicating what’s going on. If parents tell their kids “no” when it comes to things that aren’t dangerous and the child is expressing curiosity, it only makes them want to do it more, especially if the parents don’t give them a valid reason not to do something. 

Teens try to discover their identity before adulthood and strict parenting can stop them from authentically expressing themselves. 

There are many times where teenagers want to spend time with their friends and do “normal” activities, but with strict parents, they are not always allowed to do much, making them feel as if they may be missing very fun, normal experiences. Instead of going out and enjoying their teenage years, teens with overprotective parents can feel constantly stuck at home. 

Having strict parents can harm one’s social skills. When a person is always at home, they don’t get enough social time. Research shows that strict parenting also lowers self-esteem. It limits kids and teenagers from having a social life, which is crucial to development. I’m not saying that parents should give their kids complete freedom — there should still be necessary restrictions, but parents should not completely control their kids. It does more harm than good. Kids have their own thoughts, opinions, and desires. This can create a barrier in the teens and parents’ relationship, making it seem as if the child or teen is putting up walls, when in actuality, they are simply backing away from parents who are trying to completely control them and their decisions.

As stated by Aha! Parenting, “The bottom line is that strictness does not work in creating better-behaved kids; in fact, it sabotages everything positive we do as parents and handicaps our kids in their efforts to develop emotional self-discipline.”