Are my parents too cautious 2

Overcautious Parents and Impact on Children

Reading time: 3 minutes

In most cases, parents want only what is best for their child. In the beginning, this is what overcautious parents say about themselves. Basically, however, they do the exact opposite: They harm their children with their over-cautiousness. These kind of parents do everything they can to protect their children from unpleasant experiences. But that is exactly the crux of the matter: Children have to go their own way, make their own mistakes and learn from their mistakes. Parents cannot do this for them.

Are you over-cautious too?

If you protect your child from every little danger, check them around the clock and meddle in every little thing, then you are very likely to be too cautious. People who watch their children around the clock and circle around them are called helicopter parents because they are reminiscent of a police helicopter that ceaselessly circles over the target object as soon as it finds it. From time to time, experts also speak of what is known as mediatoritis.

Overcautious Parents and the Consequences

Children raised by over-cautious parents do not develop such important social behavioral skills as healthy self-confidence, determination and perseverance and the ability to solve problems independently to the same extent as children of less cautious parents. If you repeatedly act overcautious with your child, they will become increasingly anxious. Later on, they have very little confidence in themselves, have no confidence in their self-efficacy and are dependent on their parents for a long time. Some even consider themselves to be the center of the world.

Why parents are becoming more and more cautious

A lot is asked of children of the 21st century. On the one hand, they should meet the requirements of a performance society, and on the other hand, the individuality of the individual child is out of focus. But the pressure on parents is also growing. While they used to live in large families and received support from relatives, neighbors and friends, today they are more and more left alone with their upbringing problems. They raise alone, so they are responsible for the result in a negative as well as in a positive sense - that's the view of society today. In addition, parents now hardly make any intuitive decisions. Rather, they weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of the various topics and then decide on the basis of these rational preliminary considerations.

What Can Overcautious Parents Do?

In order for your child to develop positively, it is important that you give up your over-caution in dealing with your child. Realize that it is normal and human to make mistakes. Also, understand that children are endowed with the ability to endure the consequences of mistakes. If you repeatedly come across as over-cautious about your child, they will become more and more frightened and particularly hesitant about everything around them. Later on, such children have very little confidence in each other, have no confidence in their self-efficacy and are dependent on their parents for a long time.

The problems only really come to light during puberty

Overcautious parents can expect their child to suddenly rebel against their behavior during puberty at the age of 12 or 13. In most cases, children who have been raised in this way have very few friends because they find it very difficult to reach out to other people.

Closing word

If you want your child to be fine, then put off your over-cautious behavior for good. Anything else would be negligent. Be aware of what your behavior can do to your child. Let your child go to school alone when their peers do the same instead of going to school every day. As an exception, next time don't call the police immediately if someone offers your child a candy. A normal uncertainty when your child goes to school alone, takes the bus or goes shopping for the first time is completely normal.

You need to learn how to properly handle caring and letting go. You do not have omnipotence in your child's life. Ask yourself whether you suffer from anxiety and whether you are subconsciously projecting your fear onto your child. Your child can be sad, afraid, or angry every now and then. Do not make your happiness in life dependent on your child. The older it gets, the more it will automatically peel away from you. You cannot prevent this even with overly cautious behavior. Make sure YOU are happy and let your child go their own way.

Photo credit: Ramona Heim /

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