Indulgent parents raising ‘me first’ children
PARENTS are so caught up in boosting their children’s self-esteem that “they’re raising a generation of self-entitled and disrespectful people’’.
Author and parenting guru Michelle Mitchell said parents were creating a rod for their own backs by introducing bad habits early in their children’s lives.
Ms Mitchell said this included over-praising children and not allowing them to solve their own problems.
The Brisbane mother of two said an even bigger concern was parents who allowed young teens to have unrestricted access to social media.
This meant young girls in particular were at greater risk of being sexualised at an earlier age.
It was also leading to increased anxiety levels and a fear that their lives were boring compared to others.
“The main issue with unrestricted social media is that kids have a tendency to only see the positive side of what’s posted and not so much the bad bits, which reinforces the notion we live in a perfect world,” Ms Mitchell said.
The author of Parenting Teens in The Age of a New Normal said teenage girls faced different issues to previous generations.
Social media was just one example where young girls were coming unstuck in areas including bullying and sexualisation. Many lacked the emotional maturity to deal with these issues.
Ms Mitchell said the introduction of smartphones and social media made parenting even more challenging today.
“Once you press send you don’t know where it goes or who to,” she said.
“I’m not saying don’t let them have social media and smartphones, but if you’re a parent, own the technology and give them the privilege of using it.
“If you do let your daughter on social media make them sign a contract with you. I say you’re doing them a disservice by not doing this. Insist on transparency.”