Neglecting Parenting Definition Essay

When you started having children, didn’t you just feel overwhelmed by the gargantuan task of raising them, with dreams of seeing them grow up to be well-rounded and well-adjusted adults? But how do you do it? Will you be helicopter mom or dictatorial dad? Or will you let them find their own way through the world, trial-and-error style? Take comfort in the knowledge that you’re not alone. In fact, almost every parent has gone through the same dilemma.

Fortunately for the Gen Xers, Gen Yers and the millennials, American developmental psychologist Diana Baumrind came up with ground-breaking research on parenting styles in 1966. First there were three (by Baumrind,) and then Maccoby and Martin added one to make four.

These four parenting styles are the generally recognized standards use by parents today in child-rearing. Each one has its own peculiar characteristics in the discipline of the child and each style also has different outcomes on the child. Psychologists agree that authoritative parenting is the most successful of the four styles, based on the child’s development and performance.

One thing to keep in mind though is, each child is different and what is good for one may not be the best for another. There is no universally accepted one-size-fits-all parenting technique. It’s still a matter of getting to know each of your children’s strengths and weaknesses and tweaking parenting techniques to suit them.

To help you along, it’s a good idea to keep a journal where you can write down anything that pertains to parenting, your child’s moods and behavior in various situations and your own feelings and reactions to both good and bad events. If you have difficulty matching words to your thoughts and ideas, go to for help.

Authoritative Parenting

The authoritative style of parenting is characterized by the remarkable involvement of the parents in the child’s growing up years and a good balance of control and autonomy.

They guide the child’s development and set up reasonable rules that the child is expected to follow. At the same time, they allow flexibility as needed. They give positive reinforcement for the child to achieve maximum potential but do not punish the child if some objectives are not met.

Children who grow up under authoritative parenting are self-confident without being boastful, can carry on harmonious relationships, do well in their chosen career and have a generally happy disposition.

Authoritarian Parenting

Authoritarian parents set rigid and absolute rules that the child must follow without question. Communication is not a two-way street and they do not tolerate disobedience or discussions. The control of these parents over their child’s decisions and behavior is complete and irrefutable.

Children of authoritarian parents exhibit a high level of anxiety and lack self-esteem which leads to emotional problems. Sons often have anger management issues while daughters constantly seek approval from others.

Permissive Parenting

Permissive parenting does not set rules or limits for the child to follow; hence, there is no punishment for what society sees as bad behavior. The child has the freedom to make his own decisions and must bear the consequences, if there are any. Permissive parents do not see themselves as role models for the child to emulate, allowing the child to develop on his own. Since they are not authoritarian figures, these parents are openly affectionate, warm and loving.

Children of permissive parents have good social skills and high self-esteem. They do not suffer from depression as much as other children do. But because of the lack of guidance, they do not do well in school and engage in risky behavior, such as alcohol and drug use, casual sex and are insensitive to the needs of others.

Neglectful Parenting

Neglectful parenting is characterized by uninvolved, disinterested and emotionally detached parents. They may fulfill their child’s physical needs and, in worse cases, even those are not met. While the neglectful parent displays an utter lack of concern for the child, in return, he or she does not make any demands at all. This neglect may be due to psychological conditions like severe depression or substance abuse, or simply being too focused on work.

Children of neglectful parents are the worst off compared to children brought up on the other parenting styles. They have numerous social and emotional problems, have poor grades in school or may drop out of school altogether. They have difficulty with relationships with other people and may be abusive and hostile. They are also at greater risk for drug and alcohol abuse.

How Does Parenting Affect Personality?

Filed Under: InspirationTagged With: essays on parenting, parenting styles

By Bianca Mgbemere and Rachel Telles

In psychology today, there are four major recognized parenting styles: authoritative, neglectful, permissive, and authoritarian. Each one carries different characteristics and brings about different reactions in the children which they are used on. It is important to keep in mind that every parent child relationship is different, so there is not one sure fire way to go about parenting. This is a simple guide to help decode your parenting style and provide general suggestions on how to raise a happy, responsible, productive member of society.


Authoritative parenting is widely regarded as the most effective and beneficial parenting style for normal children. Authoritative parents are easy to recognize, as they are marked by the high expectations that they have of their children, but temper these expectations with understanding a support for their children as well. This type of parenting creates the healthiest environment for a growing child, and helps to foster a productive relationship between parent and child.

How to recognize if you are an authoritative parent:

·Does your child’s day have structure to it, such as a planned bedtime and understood household rules?

·Are there consequences for disrupting this structure or breaking the household rules?

·Does your child understand the expectations that you have for their behavior, and are these expectations reasonable?

·Do you have a healthy and open line of communication with your child? That is, does your child feel that they can speak to you about anything without fear of negative consequence or harsh judgment?

The traits described in the above questions mark a healthy household with an authoritative parent. Of course, parenting styles will naturally need to differ in order to accommodate different children, and you may find that this style does not work for you if your child has behavioral problems or other traits you have difficulty handling. In this case, it is best to adjust your parenting appropriately, and to seek out help from a licensed therapist if you feel overwhelmed.

One of the most important traits to emulate in the authoritative parenting style is the open communication style with the child. If a parent can foster the ability to speak to their child without judgment or reprimand, they will be more likely to have insight into the child’s life and understanding, providing the child with a deeper understanding of the world around them.



Neglectful parenting is one of the most harmful styles of parenting that can be used on a child. Neglectful parenting is unlike the other styles in that parents rarely fluctuate naturally into neglectful parenting as a response to child behavior.If a parent recognizes themselves as a neglectful parent, or if a friend recognizes that they may know a neglectful parent, it is important to understand that those parents (and the children involved in the situation) need assistance so that they can get back on track to having a healthy and communicative relationship within the family.

If you suspect you or a friend may be a neglectful parent, consider the following:

·Do you care for your child’s needs—emotional, physical, and otherwise?

·Do you have an understanding of what is going on in your child’s life?

·Does the home provide a safe space for the child where they can share their experiences and expect positive feedback rather than negative or no feedback?

·Do you spend long periods of time away from home, leaving the child alone?

·Do you often find yourself making excuses for not being there for your child?

·Do you know your child’s friends? Teachers?

·Are you involved in your child’s life outside the home?

If the above describe you or someone that you know, a child is at risk of being damaged by a neglectful household. Parents who tend towards neglectful parenting styles can be easily helped through education; this education can be found by talking to the family doctor, or going to a therapist or counselor.

Neglectful parenting is damaging to children, because they have no trust foundation with their parents from which to explore the world. Beyond that, children who have a negative or absent relationship with their parent will have a harder time forming relationships with other people, particularly children their age. If you suspect that you or a friend of yours may be a neglectful parent, it is important to seek help in a way that does not damage the child further or intrude into their life in a disruptive manner.



Permissive parenting, also known as indulgent parenting is another potentially harmful style of parenting. These parents are responsive but not demanding. These parents tend to be lenient while trying to avoid confrontation. The benefit of this parenting style is that they are usually very nurturing and loving. The negatives, however, outweigh this benefit.Few rules are set for the children of permissive parents, and the rules are inconsistent when they do exist. This lack of structure causes these children to grow up with little self-discipline and self-control. Some parents adopt this method as an extreme opposite approach to their authoritarian upbringing, while others are simply afraid to do anything that may upset their child.

How to recognize if you are a permissive parent:

·Do you not have set limits or rules for your child? Do you often compromise  your rules to accommodate your child’s mood?

·Do you avoid conflict with your child?

·Do you have a willingness to be your child’s best friend rather than their parent?

·Do you often bribe your child to do things with large rewards?

The traits described in the above questions mark an unhealthy permissive parenting style. It may seem as though this would be a child’s favorite parenting style as it provides a sense of freedom without consequences, however, children crave a sense of structure to make them feel safe and. It is important in a child’s development for there to be clear cut parental and child roles. Permissive parenting can have long-term damaging effects. In a study published in the scientific Journal of Early Adolescence, it was found that teens with permissive parents are three times more likely to engage in heavy underage alcohol consumption. This is likely do to their lack of consequences for their behavior.

Other damaging effects of permissive parenting include:

·insecurity in children from of lack of set boundaries

·poor social skills, such as sharing, from lack of discipline


·poor academic success from lack of motivation

·clashing with authority

It is important for the permissive parent to begin to set boundaries and rules for their child, while still being responsive before it is too late. If enacting new structures proves too daunting, it is advised again to seek out the help of a licensed therapist.



Authoritarian parenting, also called strict parenting, is characterized by parents who are demanding but not responsive. Authoritarian parents allow for little open dialogue between parent and child and expect children to follow a strict set of rules and expectations. They usually rely on punishment to demand obedience or teach a lesson.

Recognizing your authoritarian style:

·Do you have very strict rules that you believe should be followed no matter what?

·Do you often find yourself offering no explanations for the rules other than “Because I said so?”

·Do you give your child few choices and decisions about their own life?

·Do you find yourself utilizing punishment as a means of getting your child to do what you ask?

·Are you reserved in the amount of warmth and nurturing you show your child?

While the structure and rules of an authoritarian parent are necessary for healthy child development, all good things can be overdone. It is important to balance out the provided structure with open communication so the child knows exactly why it is important for them to follow the rules placed in front of them. Children of authoritarian parents are prone to having low self-esteem, being fearful or shy, associating obedience with love, having difficulty in social situations, and possibly misbehaving when outside of parental care.A therapist can once again be contacted if adopting open communication proves to be too difficult to achieve by oneself.


Baumrind, D. (1991). The influence of parenting style on adolescent competence and substance use. Journal of Early Adolescence, 11(1), 56-95.

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