If you’re a listener of The Swirl & Sip Podcast, you probably heard our conversation about learning our parenting style. When I found out I was becoming a mom, I had some ideas on how I would parent. But more in the “Pinterest mom” way and less in the “how I’ll disciple” way. I had heard of different parenting styles but never thought much about where I fell. There’s no instruction manual when it comes to parenting. Learning your parenting style is all trial and error. Here’s what works for us (for now).
I highly recommend you take this parenting quiz if you’re unfamiliar with the five types of parenting styles. We would fall into what is now called “free-range” parenting since we grew up in the 80s. Back then, it was just being a kid. Kids could go outside and play without a parent around. We could wander the neighborhood as long as we were home before the street lights came on. Growing up in the era before cell phones meant we had a lot a leeway and independence.
My parents, on the other hand, grew up in a more authoritarian household, i.e. “my way or the highway” and seen but never heard. Children should never question an adult, even if that adult was doing something that didn’t make sense. I don’t blame my grandparents for this type of parenting style since it was the norm back then.
We never had an explicit conversation about the types of parents we wanted to be. But I think we both fall squarely into the authoritative style. We’ve already set expectations for Stokely even though he is only two. He picks up his toys before he moves on to a new activity. He puts his dishes in the sink when he’s done with a meal. We focus on positive reinforcement instead of punishment. While society has definitely changed since we were kids, my hope is that as he gets older, I’ll be able to give him the same types of freedom I had growing up.
While I definitely thought I’d be much more strict, it’s a relief knowing that the hubs parents in almost the same way. Trying to figure out your own parenting style is never easy. It’s hard trying to decide how strict or lenient to be. No one wants to raise an entitled asshole. So far, Stokely seems to be growing up just fine.