KIDS NOT ALL RIGHT
Overnurturing can have long-lasting negative effects
We overprotect, overindulge, overbuy and we’re over-the-top! Add to the list overnurture!
And it’s in a house near you, likely your own! While coming from a good heart, there’s no doubt it’s doing your kids in.
Overnurture can trigger anxiety and stunts children’s emotional and cognitive growth, says Dr. David Bredehoft, and have kids missing out on learning valuable life skills.
“Overnurture appears to inhibit the development of a child’s communication and relationship skills, decision-making, and money and time management skills. Further, overnurtured children may not know how to take on adult responsibilities. They rely on others to complete tasks for them,” reports Bredehoft, a psychologist and Professor Emeritus, Psychology and Family Studies, Concordia University, St. Paul.
Overnurture is when parents are overinvolved in their children’s lives by giving them more attention than necessary. They anticipate their children’s needs even before their child does.
“It is doing things that children should be doing for themselves, smothering them with love, allowing them too many privileges, making sure they are always entertained, and hovering over them constantly trying to insulate them from frustration, stress, and anxiety,” says the author of How Much is Too Much? Raising Likeable, Responsible, Respectful Children — From Toddlers To Teens — In An
Age of Overindulgence.
His research indicates that children who were overnurtured experience a mixture of positive and negative feelings: A high percentage (48%) reported feeling loved, and 28% reported feeling good because they got everything they wanted, but 44% felt confused, while 31% felt guilty, bad and sad.
According to Bredehoft, overnurtured individuals report that it follows them well into adulthood:
“I don’t have to grow up because other people will take care of me.”
“I have extreme difficulty making decisions.”
“I need praise and material reward to feel worthy.”
“I feel like I need lots of things to feel good about myself.”
“I have to buy gifts to be loved.”
“I constantly need outside affirmation from my friends.”
It’s likely a high percentage of parents are overnurturing when you consider that 43% of parents nationwide do their child’s homework. More fathers (47%) than mothers (39%) do homework for their kids. A majority of American parents (62%) say they can be overprotective, especially mothers.
Add to that 30% of college job recruiters have had a parent submit a resume for their child.
And 15% had a parent complain when their child wasn’t hired and 12% have had a parent call to schedule an interview for their college-aged child.