Helicopter Parenting v. Free-Range Parenting: Which is better?

Opinions on Debatable Issues #21

According to Healthline, helicopter parenting is “hyper-involvement in a child’s life.” Free-range parenting is oppositive, providing more freedom to the children and restrict the number of interventions from the parents.

There has been heated debate over which method of parenting is more desirable in the 21st century. In recent decades, more people have been embracing helicopter parenting and criticizing free-range parenting as neglect and irresponsibility. This caused the free-range parenting movement that advocated for giving children the freedom to foster independence. Both sides have interesting points. In this article, I am going to share some compelling arguments for helicopter parenting.

Image result for helicopter parents and free-range
The Coloradoan

Helicopter parenting helps the children to become more successful. In her study, Dr. Lareau observed that middle and upper-class parents were often more structured and interventionist in their children’s lives than the “natural growth” method used by the lower classes. The active intervention had a long-term beneficial impact on the development and socioeconomic status of the children. Economists Matthias Doepke of Northwestern University and Fabrizio Zilibotti of Yale found that kids whose parents were considered more intense and involved were more likely to graduate from college and go on to get graduate degrees.

Image result for helicopter parents can be a good thing
BrightPath

Helicopter parenting is necessary to protect children. The advancement of the internet created a new arena for insidious crimes against children, who are less discerning of crimes and are less rational than adults. The Library of Congress found that in recent years, as younger children started to access the internet, “cyberbullying (bullying by means of electronic communication, such as instant messaging, e-mail, chat rooms, and cell phones) and victimization begin as early as second grade for some children, and by middle school, students as a group experience or engage in all known forms of cyber abuse and online aggression”.

Image result for internet dangers to kids
SafeWise

Also, a 2007 staff report of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee found that the number of sexually explicit images of children on the Internet was increasing and that victims were typically younger and the images more violent than in previous years. Researchers surveyed more than 1,000 teens and young adults reported by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy in 2008. They found that 20 percent of the teens had sent or posted nude or seminude pictures or video of themselves, and 11 percent of young adolescent girls (ages 13 to 16) had done so. Thirty-nine percent of teens reported sending sexually suggestive text messages (“sexting”), and 48 percent of teens reported having received such messages. That demonstrates the negative influence of the internet on young children, such as leading to early unhealthy sex relationships and pregnancy. The only way to improve the situation is to have parents monitor their children carefully to detect any suspicious activities and eliminate any chance of trouble from the beginning.

Evidence has shown that free-range parenting would let the situation worsen. According to the Library of Congress, researchers McQuade and Sampat found that 66 percent of high school students reported that their parents provided no supervision of internet activities. That means more freedom exposes those children to dangerous online activities. A study by Chang-Hoan Cho and Hongsik John Cheon found that parents “generally underestimate their children’s exposure to negative material on the Internet, when in fact children encounter negative content frequently”. This means parents are not being paranoic as our opponent contests. Therefore, helicopter parenting is better and must be advocated for.

Image result for parents don't know about online danger
Children’s Health Queensland

Some critics of helicopter parenting argue that these actions are overprotective and are violating the children’s privacy. However, the Constitution gives the parents almost complete power over how to raise their children. According to the American Bar Association, the Supreme Court explained that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment protects this liberty, incorporating “the right to marry, establish a home, and bring up children”, suggesting that parents have the right to raise children as they wish. So if parents want to be more actively involved in their children’s lives, they have the constitutional rights to do so.

Besides, the Supreme Court has recognized that the standard to evaluate parenting approach should be based on the child’s best interest. Since parents know their children better and love the children, their actions are going to be in the best interest of the children for the most time.

Therefore, helicopter parenting has the advantage of ensuring the safety of children and helping them to become more successful, without violating the constitution.

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The Washington Post

Sources:

Check out the other Opinions on Debatable Issues:

– Funding the Defenders: Not Enough to Curb Prosecutorial Power
https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2020/11/21/funding-the-defenders-not-enough-to-curb-the-abuse-of-prosecutorial-power/
– Thanksgiving is WORTH Celebrating, Even in Light of Its Origin
https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2020/11/28/thanksgiving-is-worth-celebrating-even-in-light-of-its-origin/
– No-First-Use (NFU) of Nuclear Weapons is NECESSARY
https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2020/12/05/no-first-use-nfu-of-nuclear-weapons-is-necessary/
– Governmental Regulations on Social Media: Necessary and Constitutional
https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2020/12/12/governmental-regulations-on-social-media-necessary-and-constitutional/

– Expell the legislators who endorsed “Stop the Steal” Immidiately https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2021/01/16/expell-the-legislators-who-endorsed-stop-the-steal-immidiately/

– Presidents should be allowed only 16 executive orders and 10 pardons in a term. https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2021/01/23/presidents-should-be-allowed-only-16-executive-orders-and-10-pardons-in-a-term/

-Unions help workers obtaining better terms of employment, but what are their downsides?https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2021/01/30/unions-help-workers-obtaining-better-terms-of-employment-but-what-are-their-downsides/

-Online Shopping Has Taken Over Our Lives, But is it Actually Better Than In-Store Shopping?https://mypathtowardsmindfulness.org/2021/02/14/online-shopping-has-taken-over-our-lives-but-is-it-actually-better-than-in-store-shopping/

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