According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of a helicopter parent is "a parent who is overly involved in the life of his or her child."
I think we all know a helicopter parent or two. You may even be one yourself. Me? I'm a free-range kid who grew up to be a hovering helicopter parent. So I can relate to wanting to be involved in your child's life. But sometimes you see something that goes above and beyond the standard, taking hovering to a new level.
- Bubble-wrapping your child before sending them outside to play freeze tag with the neighborhood kids.
- Infiltrating not only your child’s play dates as a toddler, but also actual dates as an adult, to make sure he doesn't get his heart broken by some big, meanie girl.
- Cutting up your kid’s food and pre-chewing it to be sure they don’t choke and/or only feeding them soft foods. Banana smoothie anyone?
- Burping your 12-year-old after he downs a carbonated beverage.
- Making your 5-year-old wear a helmet to play on the jungle gym at school.
- Slathering every square inch of your child in SPF 2000 before allowing them to walk to the car. (Unless they are Dracula I sincerely doubt they are in any danger of spontaneously combusting or bursting into flames.)
- Keeping your 46-inch, 6-year-old imprisoned in a crib and wearing a diaper to ensure that he doesn't get out of bed and wander down some stairs and stub his toe.
- Lurking outside of the elementary school, watching through the kindergarten classroom window, and patrolling to make sure that no one steals your child from the school grounds.
- Following your 18-year-old off to university and moving into the apartment next door, so that you can make sure that his refrigerator is full, his clothes are clean, and no one is mean to him.
- Accompanying your grown child on a job interview. Dressing him, sitting next to him, and answering all questions for him while deflecting any that might make him feel less than perfect.
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Do I have a problem with any of things? Nah. I say parent and let parent. In fact, to those of you who have done any of these, I would like to pay tribute. I salute you, super helicopter parents.
C'mon you can tell us, have you done any of these things?
Image via Harbortrees/Flickr