How low should a mom hover?
The debate rages on about helicopter parenting. Call it what you like, I believe until a child at least gets through their teens they need the constant reassurance that really involved parenting offers. That is not to say we should be tying our 14-year-olds shoes, but that same kid also shouldn't be so on his own that he doesn't what his mom would think about something, or feel like she's right there to talk to about it, help him with it--whatever it is.
But what about helicopter parents of really big kids? The 18, 19, 20 year old. One of my favorite parenting bloggers, Lisa Belkin of the Motherlode explores the subject:
Aucoin (a Boston Globe reporter) also provides data to show that a parent’s fingerprints on a child’s life does not de facto cripple that child, citing the 2007 research of Jillian Kinzie, the associate director of Indiana University’s Center for Postsecondary Research, which looked the effects of so-called helicopter parents on students at 750 colleges. Those students “were more engaged in learning and reported greater satisfaction with their colleges,” Aucoin writes. Adds Kinzie: “They tended to have more interactions with the faculty, they tended to be involved in active learning, collaborative learning, more often than their peers.” (But, he adds, their grades were slightly lower.)
Listen, I'll take slightly lower grades (only slightly) any day, if I means my children will be well-adjusted, self-loving, common-sense having soon to be adults.
What about you? What do you think about the idea of being a helicopter parent to older kids? Does it help them or hurt them?