Ya’ll I’m obsessed with Pocket. It allows me to save articles to read later, and it will even read those articles to me. It has made my life of keeping up with the goings on in the world MUCH easier. I don’t want to live in some hole especially when there is a lot out there for us to talk about. You hear me? I know you’re probably feeling the same way. This week there was a great article from U.S. News on helicopter parenting. It’s a real hot button issue I know, but boy we need to talk about it.
Helicopter parenting has been getting real as of late. We’ve had a lot of focus as of late on free-range parenting, because it is the latest in trends I presume. The truth of the matter is that there can be issues with any type of parenting. You won’t raise perfect children if you let them roam on their own nor will you raise perfect children if you try to do everything for them. Helicopter parenting isn’t the answer. Kids who are raised via helicopter parenting are showing to be less happy and less financially independent according to this study, and I think we know that ultimately that makes us all a little more sad. Financial independence is a cornerstone to a happy life.
None of us are going to turn our kids away when they’re in need. When your kid finishes college, you’re likely to open your doors again at least for a little while until they get on their feet. We all know that the job market has been harder the last few years than any other time in recent history, but not the worst ever. We all know that good kids who work hard sometimes need help getting a leg up. These are the same kids though who are innovative enough to figure out ways around things. They’ll find innovative ways to make money. They’ll start their own business. They’ll share their talents. These are kids who aren’t having their hand held on the way to the DMV, because they don’t know how to get a driver’s license. Helicopter parenting doesn’t alleviate that, because it teaches dependence on the parent. Kids who haven’t experienced this helicopter parenting phenomenon are the kids who have parents who hold them accountable for their bad grades in college. Honestly ya’ll I can’t imagine any more of a disservice to yourself and your children than for them not to be able to live their life on their own.
You’ll be happier, because you won’t be stressed about their next shortfall. They’ll be happier, because they can do it themselves. You’ll have fewer fights, because you can all agree that they get to live their life as they see fit and can either take your opinion or not. If they don’t owe you everything, they will be more independent adults. I’m not saying that they won’t call you. I’m not saying that your opinion won’t matter. I am saying that everyone has to live their own life, because what are these kids gonna do when you die? They’re gonna get their own failure to thrive notice, and it won’t be pretty.
I personally believe it’s important to teach your children life skills. They aren’t really taught those in school. I was given a checking account to balance at 16. I got my first credit card at 18. I was taught how to use those things as tools. I had to balance my money each mother. Sure, I fell into pitfalls of spending too much and acquiring too much credit card debt at one point, but I came out of it knowing even more about how to manage money. I had to get a loan to pay off the debt, and I had to pay that loan back. This payment was much less than the one I would be making to the other various companies, but I still had to pay it. I feel wiser for it.
We’re all going to make mistakes, but sometimes you gotta let your kid figure it out on their own.
How did you learn about money? What pitfalls met you? How did you get out of those situations?