Here is a little analogy I used to describe parenting styles today…
Think of the parent as an island on a big lake…
The parent that doesn’t force independence but sets clear boundaries:
The child will test the boundaries….stay near the island for a while and then will slowly swim further and further always coming back and touching base…. then, when they are ready they will succeed at getting to the shoreline… (adulthood)
If you force independence, it is as if you start pushing the child into the water to make them swim… if you do that they will get start clinging onto the island more and more, they may develop fears of the water, push them too hard… they may drown or find another island to be their base….
The Overbearing and over protective parent?… it is like building a fence on the island… they will one day escape and try to go too far too fast or develop terrible fears of the water and never be able to adventure further…
I was wondering though…. what would the Permissive Parent be… an island of Jello? A series of little Islands just big enough to hold onto but not enought to provide safety? an island with muddy borders?
What do you think?
I have to think on the permissive parenting but I just wanted to say this is the best analogy! Yet another thing I’d love to steal 🙂
thanks! no prob… go ahead!
I agree – this is an excellent analogy. As for the permissive parent? Perhaps some people are so permissive that it is difficult to distinguish the island from the water in the first place.
Okay I’ve been thinking about this. So a Permissive Parent would be like landfill. It’s there. It’s something to anchor oneself on in the middle of a lake. But the moment there is an earthquake the land liquefies and the foundation is gone, absorbed into the water. Similarly the moment a serious challenge or obstacle is presented, or some other earth-shaking event happens, the permissive parent lacks a solid foundation, a core set of beliefs that they steer themselves by and likewise provide to their children. They crumble, abandon the ideals they originally set in the beginning and the child flounders in the water.
And yes, I am Californian so I tend to use earthquakes in my analogies…LOL.
Anyway I am glad you put this term out there “Permissive Parenting.” To be honest awhile back before I knew more about AP and Positive Parenting, I mistakenly had the impression that Positive Parenting was how do I say it, kinda wimpy, permissive if you will. Since then I have come to understand it is not about this at all. This is probably a big misbelief about AP I think, that children are allowed to run around, do anything. When in fact it’s about being a STRONG parent and setting out to guide your children the right way, not necessarily the easiest way. Hope makes sense, missed my caffeine dose this morning.