As a sequel to our last post (and newsletter) about the problems with permissive parenting, now couldn't be a more perfect opportunity to summarize the problems with strict parenting. Much has been published about the negative affects of authoritarian styles of parenting, so I'll aim to outline as many broad-spectrum points about the subject as possible.
If permissive parenting is described as lackadaisical, lenient and submissive in the context of conflict, then it's safe to say that strict parenting promotes iron-fistedness, aggressiveness and dominance above all. Strict parents will often "win" or "get what they want" in any given conflict, but the visible and emotional affects on the child include much (if not all) of the following:
- Externally compliant, but internally depressed and defeated
- Compliant but internally enraged, build-up of aggressiveness
- Feigned sycophancy in aims to manipulate
- Fear of trying/Fear of failure
- Forming "groups" in order to fight back in numbers
- Rebelling/Outlashing - especially after long periods of submission
- Withdrawing from parents and social interactions
- Tendency to seek out adult relationships that are controlling (acting as the controlee)
- Increased probability of developing anxiety disorders
- Tendency to forfeit and ignore their own needs
- Self-imposed, impossible attempts at perfection
Although this list is dismal, many of these points resonate with adults who are the product of authoritarian parenting in their childhood. It is often the case that when parents realize the affects that their childhood had on them, that they realize it is not something that should be continued through the next generation.
More on the effects of punishment and parental power can be found in Chapter 10 of the Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.) book.
by: Selena C. George