There are many different styles of raising children, all of which have differing effects on how they develop psychologically. It is important to be an authoritative parent, enforcing rules and expectations so that the child grows up with a learned sense of morality. However, parents who take their authority to an extreme level, expecting unquestioned obedience from their child, are known as authoritarian parents. This parenting style has negative effects of the social and cognitive development of children.
Authoritarian parenting is often characterized by strict rules and harsh punishments. These parents often shame their children and display a withdrawal of love and affection, as a form of punishment. The harsh, cold environment of fearful compliance that exists within authoritarian households, has many disadvantages on the development of children and adolescents.
Children raised by strict, authoritarian parents are more likely to have little self esteem and self-management when they reach adulthood. This is because blind obedience does not leave room for that child to learn how to self-regulate. They are more likely become depressed and show signs of anger outside the home. Also, for kids raised this way, juvenile delinquency is a common way of exercising their independence. Authoritarian parenting often teaches the child to only do what is right when a figure of authority is around, and it also teaches them to become excellent liars.
Balancing authority and enforcement, with warmth and affection is a style that has shown to be most beneficial to a child’s development. Parents who set high expectations for their children but are also understanding and willing to compromise, tend to have closer relationships not only during childhood , but throughout life. An open, relaxed, home-environment fosters strong relationships between parents and children. Growing up with the notion that it is okay to make mistakes is healthy for a developing adolescent and high self-esteem, self-discipline, and respect are characteristics seen in children raised in this way.
The level of strictness that parents enforce on their children plays an important role on development and can have lifelong effects . Being too permissive allows children to believe that they can do whatever they want without any consequence, but being too strict is also extremely harmful to a child. Therefore, a balanced combination of affection and authority within a relaxed home environment doesn’t only benefit cognitive and social development but it also breeds the strong, lifelong, relationships between parents and their children.