Baumrind Parenting Style: Definition, Advantages, and Disadvantages

How many parenting styles do you know? Which style are you demonstrating to raise your kids? There are some popular styles recognized these days like permissive, authoritative, free-range, and many more. Do you know that some of those popular methods are based on the work of Diana Baumrind? These styles are later known as Baumrind parenting style.

Baumrind believed that parenting style is associated to children’s behavior. Different style can lead to different child outcome, behavior, and development. If you can’t wait to get to know more about parenting style by Baumrind, just keep scrolling.

What Is Baumrind Parenting Style

Diana Baumrind is a developmental psychologist worked at the University of California. She noticed that young children showed different types of behavior, which was correlated to a certain parenting style. In 1960s, she conducted extensive observation, in-depth interview and analyses before she grouped parents into four parenting styles which are later called as Baumrind parenting styles.

Here are four parenting styles as categorized by Baumrind:

Authoritative Parenting

There are two main characteristics of this parenting style: high responsiveness and high demandingness. Authoritative parents set high expectations for their children especially on maturity and achievement. But these parents also warm and responsive.

Parents who demonstrate this Baumrind parenting style provide a set of rules and enforce boundaries through guidance, open discussion, and reasoning.

Children are accustomed with explanation and reasoning for each of parent’s action, allowing them to develop their sense of awareness. Authoritative parents are also supportive and affectionate, encouraging the kids to be independent and autonomous.

Authoritarian Parenting

High demandingness and low responsiveness are two main characteristics of authoritarian parenting that make it easy to distinguish from others. Despite the similarity of name between authoritative and authoritarian parenting, there are significant differences in approach, belief, and demand.

While both styles have high demandingness, authoritarian parents don’t encourage the kids with explanation and reasoning. Instead, they demand blind obedience—kids have to do it because the parents said so. When they set rules, children don’t have access to open discussion or reasoning so that there’s only one way communication.

Permissive Parenting

Another Baumrind parenting style is permissive parenting or indulgent. This style is characterized by low demandingness and high responsiveness. Permissive parenting style set few boundaries and rules but they don’t enforce the rules. These parents are indulgent and warm but they don’t want to disappoint the children by saying no.

Besides, indulgent parenting allows children to position their parents more like friends. They have open communication but these parents commonly let children decide themselves instead of giving direction and suggestion. Additionally, parents don’t use discipline to control kid’s behavior.

Neglectful Parenting

Often known as uninvolved parenting, this Baumrind parenting style is one of the worst. Low demandingness and responsiveness is the main character of neglectful parenting, which means the parents don’t set boundaries, rules or standard and don’t even care about it. They’re also uninvolved in children’s lives.

Read Also: Snowplow Parenting Style

Some parents consciously choose this method while some others aren’t into parenting so they end up demonstrating this neglectful parental style. Interestingly, some parents may have mental problems caused by bad experience when they were kids like physical abuse or depression.

How Baumrind Parenting Style Affect for Children’s Future

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Parenting style is important in shaping children’s behavior and cognitive development. From here, it’s clear that each of Baumrind parenting style brings different outcome. For instance, children with parents who demonstrate authoritative style are accustomed with discussion and discipline so they tend to grow with more awareness and better social skills.

On the other hand, children with indulgent parents always get what they want as accustomed by their parents. As a result, these kids grow to be impulsive, egocentric, and are less able to have social interactions.

Here’s a closer look at the influence of child raising style for children’s future.

  • Authoritative Parenting

Authoritative is considered the most beneficial parenting style for kids. With the parents are nurturing, reasonable, and set clear expectations, the children get used to be discipline and able to think for themselves. With frequent communication, children’s social skills develop very well so that they won’t have problem with social interactions and relationships.

In addition, authoritative parents are supportive so that the kids are less likely to suffer from mental illness. Those who are raised with authoritative parenting grow to be self-disciplined, independent, active, and have high self esteem. Not to mention they tend to attain higher academic achievement.

  • Authoritarian Parenting

This Baumrind parenting style puts emphasis on setting high expectation without a commitment to help the kids achieve the goals. This affect children’s mental health so that they are prone to mental illness. Unresponsive parents can also result in children with lower academic performance because they don’t give enough support.

Authoritarian parents often use stern discipline and they don’t hesitate to use harsh punishment to control kid’s behavior, which can lead to poor self-confidence. Children who are demanded to be obedient without getting explanation are more prone to drug or alcohol abuse and delinquency.Other future effects of authoritarian parenting is insecurity and unhappiness.

  • Permissive Parenting

With parents treat their children like friend, this Baumrind parenting style isn’t beneficial especially for children’s future. Indulgent parents tend to have the worst outcomes. Being warm and responsive is good but doing it too much can make your kids impulsive. They also become egocentric as they always get what they want.

In addition to the influence, indulgent kids can’t follow rules as their parents set a few rules without enforcing the boundaries.

They also have poor self-control, not to mention these children commonly have problems in social interactions and relationships. As permissive parents put minimal expectations, the outcomes tend to be less competitive.

  • Uninvolved Parenting

Parents who aren’t involved in children’s lives or give too much freedom are developing worse outcome.  

Based on the theory of Baumrind, this parenting can develop impulsive children as the parents are cold and unresponsive. Besides, kids with neglectful parents are unable to control emotion and prone to delinquency because they don’t have rules to follow.

Neglectful parents aren’t interested in establishing good communication so that the kids can express their anger, sadness or anxiety in drugs and alcohol abuse.

In a more significant issue, neglectful parenting can trigger suicides as children think that their parents are indifferent with their presence. This Baumrind parenting style is one of the worst to demonstrate to raise children.

What We Learn from Baumrind

Parenthood is never easy because you are dealing with other individuals whose development and behavior depends on your approaches and strategies.

Your parenting style determines kids’ success in the future so you need to know which style is the most beneficial and which ones to avoid.

Now that you know four categories of Baumrind parenting style, it’s time to dive deeper to get some values. What can be learned from Baumrind’s styles? Here are compiled lessons to help you with parental styles.

  1. Children Need Rules and Boundaries

It’s important to set rules and enforce boundaries for your children. It helps them learn about discipline so that their sense of awareness can develop. Children who are raised without or with minimum rules tend to be impulsive and less able to follow rules in the future.

Some children may refuse to follow or ask the reasons before obeying it. As a parent, you need to give them access to open discussion and give guidance and reasoning so that your children understand why they need to follow the rules. This strategy helps them learn about goals, values, and morals.

  1. Set Expectation for Kids

Permissive parents set minimal expectations or even not set any of it, which means children don’t have goals to achieve. Some parents choose not to be demanding because they don’t want to push too much. Unfortunately, this decision produces the worst outcome as the kids become impulsive and are unable to control themselves.

Demandingness means the extend parent control the behavior of the children or expectation to their maturity. Parents with low demandingness don’t help the children develop their cognitive skills. That’s why these children tend to be egocentric and have more problems in social interactions.

  1. Give Adequate Responsiveness

Another aspect to learn from Baumrind parenting style is to give adequate responsiveness. Responsiveness means the degree parents are sensitive to children’s developmental and emotional needs. Being responsive is good but giving too much responsiveness can break the children.

Both authoritative and permissive parents are warm and responsive but they produce different outcomes. What makes it different? On the one hand, authoritative parents are warm and responsive but on the other hand they set high expectations for kids’ maturity and achievement. The children are provided with guidance and reasoning to help them meet the expectations.

On the contrary, permissive parents show responsiveness but they don’t have high expectation for achievement. They care more about children’s emotional needs than developmental needs to their sensitivity goes to the wrong way.

  1. Parents’ Supports Prevent Mental Illness

Baumrind parenting style also teaches that parents’ supports are important to help prevent mental illness in children. Lack of support or indifference as found in neglectful parents can affect children’s mental health as their emotional and developmental needs are never met. Of course, it can lead to several problems in the future.

When parents aren’t involved, children may feel extreme loneliness. They don’t have someone who supports or helps them deal with problems, be it in academics or relationships.

The absence of parents’ involvement can cause the children to be more impulsive and unable to regulate emotion. As they grow older, they have tendencies to suicidal behavior.

Next must reads : Parallel Parenting Style

What We Can Do to Start It?

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Of course, you want to demonstrate the best parenting style to raise your children. Based on Baumrind parenting style, authoritative is the most beneficial for kids as it produces the best outcomes—happier and healthier children. And yet, you can’t be an expert authoritative parent in one night because you learn as you demonstrate.

Apart from all, the key point of authoritative parenting is commitment and consistency. Moreover if you have demonstrated other parenting style before, it takes more time for you and your children to adapt. The best advice for every parent is not to give up when it doesn’t seem right in the beginning as everything will be better the next time you try.

Here are several strategies to start authoritative parenting.

  • Listen to Your Children

Authoritative parents respect their children. They welcome children’s opinions and listen to their ideas rather than forcing arguments just like most authoritarian parents do. Your kids might tell the same stories for many times but all you have to do is to be a good listener. They will feel more appreciated and confident to share ideas and opinions.

  • Validate Children’s Emotions

This Baumrind parenting style acknowledges children’s feeling. That means authoritative parents help children label and recognize their emotion that affect behavior. When your child is angry, you can correct his behavior rather than minimizing his feeling. You can say that it’s OK to feel angry but hitting someone isn’t OK. Your child will learn how to manage their emotions.

  • Involve Kids in Decision-Making

Unlike permissive parents who let their children take charge, being authoritative parent means you involve your children in decision-making. For instance, if you’re planning a holiday, ask her how she feels about the plan. But you don’t need to ask whether it’s OK for her so that she knows you’re in charge. Kids are unable to make decision because they lack of experience.

  • Set Clear Rules

To be an authoritative parent, you can start with setting clear rules that help ensure the kids know your expectations. Make sure to provide the children with explanations and reasoning why you set the rules. They will understand the moral issue, values, and safety reasons behind your decision.

All in all, the Baumrind parenting style includes different sets of strategies used to raise children. Authoritative parenting is considered the most beneficial as it raises happier children who are ready for adulthood. Try several tips above to help you start authoritative parenting!

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