What are the effects of bad parenting

If you are reading this, you want to know what are the effects of bad parenting, right? Child Psychologists unanimously agree that children are born blank and grow up to see themselves how their parents see them. Hearing this might make you fidget a little and check yourself, just to be sure you are doing this parenting thing right.

No doubt, raising another human is a tedious task. It can be really hard especially when you have never seen anyone model what good parenting is. To help you stay on track, this article would be looking at what bad parenting entails, causes, effects of bad parenting on a child, and how to improve.


What Is Bad Parenting 

Bad parenting is a blanket term used to refer to all the harmful things parents do while raising their children. Most often than not, these parents believe they are raising their children right, and doing what is best for them.

These practices range from physical harming as a form of punishment for bad behavior, to neglecting a child’s emotional needs, and putting your child at the bottom of your affection pyramid.

Before you beat yourself up, it is important to acknowledge how far you have come. Many parents are either uninformed or ill-informed. Others barely care to check out healthier ways of raising their children, so pat yourself on the back for going the extra mile, for yourself and your kids.

To effectively thrash out what bad parenting is, it is necessary to know what is not bad parenting.

Taking care of yourself first is not a selfish act as it makes you a strong shield and a better parent. Teaching your children to respect your needs and be considerate is a great attribute of quality parenting.

Also, snapping every once in a while or hurting your child unintentionally doesn’t mean you are doing this wrong. So long as you apologize. Being unable to show up for your child sometimes is simply a testament of the fact that you are human.

Having said all of this, let’s now identify  the things you may be doing wrong. Certain things are right but when done in the wrong way or at the wrong time, it loses it relevance.


Also Read: Proven 50 Basic Parenting Tips for New Mom And Dad


Things That Affect Good Parenting


Falling Short In the Aspect of Supervision

This is a big mistake parents make. Many are led to believe meeting a child’s material needs is all that matters. The needs of a child varies as they grow older. Toddlers may need close eye supervision to protect them from hurting themselves as they go on their carefree adventures.  Older children may need a lot of physical touch, attention and an attentive ear.

Teenagers tend to be harder to handle but then, it’s a really delicate phase where parents need to be there for their children. Being absent from your child’s life sets you up for a lot of disappointment as your child would most likely not turn out well.


Inability to Spot Budding Bad Traits

Supervising a child is one thing, having a patient eye to see the patterns your child is displaying is another. The behavior your child manifests is something they have been exposed to. When it comes to grooming a child, the earlier a bad habit is spotted, the better.

Leaving your child to grow at the mercy of the world is a big injustice against your child. The world is filled with so much information and as the child’s parent, you are the first teacher. You need to be available to guide your child. Building a connection with them is paramount as this helps build trust in your child’s mind.


Devaluing a Child’s Desires

A social experiment conducted by a group of psychologists prove that parents tend to play down their children’s desires, and this is effected in the aspect of decision making. Usually, parents are advised to take the bull by the horn and make the decisions for their children since they are older and more exposed. However, this is very harmful in reality.

When it comes to decision making or the desires of your child, you are expected to wear two hats.  What your child does with their life must not necessarily please you especially when their desires are not harmful. Remember, your children are in no way an extension of you.


Also Read: What to Do When Baby Swallow Bath Water


Signs of Bad Parenting

 Assessing your parenting skills helps you know where you are at, and how you can improve. The following are six basic signs of bad parenting:

1. Aggressive Punishment

It is natural for your child to test your limits and push you to the wall. Every human has done this as a child, including you. It can be tough to manage your emotions in the face of your child’s disrespectful behavior but reacting impulsively is wrong, very wrong. This makes your child feel unloved. It creates a bridge between the two of you and signals to your child that aggressive behavior is appropriate.

2. Embarrassing your Child Publicly

 Children need a healthy dose of discipline to become well rounded adults. But, this should not be done before strangers. It leaves a long lasting feeling of shame in your child. Their self image is altered and they start to feel small. In the end, the goal of the correction is not achieved.

3. Offering Little Support

Children see their Moms and Dads as their Sheroes and Heroes. As they navigate through the different phases in their lives, they are counting on your support even if they don’t verbalize it. Leaving your kids all by themselves affects their self confidence. When faced with little tasks, they would find it daunting and most likely turn out to be quitters later on in life.

4. Inconsistent Affection

Are you attentive to your child’s stories today and tomorrow you are no longer interested? Is your love a good cup, bad cup kind of love? The harsh realities of life sometimes makes fulfilling our responsibilities hard but you can’t stop trying. Inconsistent affection creates holes and empty spaces in your child’s life. This makes them prone to having unhealthy friends and lovers. They will constantly be on the giving end as it becomes a source of validation. Sometimes, they end up being entangled with narcissists that could drain out every fiber of life left in them.

5. Making Comparisons

Some parents from the 60s used comparison as a way to keep their children in line. This works on the outside and causes harm on the inside. Such a child will grow up to be an adult that can only find satisfaction when striving against the wrong competitor – other people, instead of oneself. There are lots of ways to correct a child’s behavior. Using comparison is a big sign of bad parenting.

6. Downgrading their Achievement

No matter how little your child’s achievement is, celebrate it. Make them feel special for achieving such a feat. Do not express remarks on their shortcomings. They see you as their world so if you don’t value their achievement, they wouldn’t value it either. Not acknowledging their hard work can make them hard core perfectionists and people who never take credit for their work no matter how well it is done.


Causes of Bad Parenting

Bad parenting has several root causes. Identifying these factors will help you reflect on yourself to know what parts of you need healing. Only then will the cycle of bad parenting be broken.

1. Having a Bad Childhood

There is a popular saying that bad parents raise bad parents. As adults, we are subconsciously repeating the patterns we saw in our parents as children. So if you have mean, spiteful or bad parents in general, you are likely to become one. Of course, the reverse can be the case if you spend time to heal your past hurt and cultivate healthier parenting techniques.

2. Illiteracy and Ignorance

The mind that stops learning stops growing. A large percentage of the world is still oblivious about how changing times have to translate to modified parenting techniques. If your style of parenting was the coolest in the 20th century, it’s probably outdated now.

Your refusal to catch up with the trends and brush up your approach to child rearing will hurt you and your child.

3. Having Kids When You Aren’t Ready

The troubles teenage pregnancies come with can never be over emphasized. In some cases, they get little or no help from family members and relatives. These teenagers struggle to fulfill their duties and a good number end up depressed, sometimes doing drugs and drinking alcohol. The new souls are neglected and left to be at the mercy of the world.


What are the Effects of Bad Parenting?

The effects of bad parenting are countless. The children turn out damaged and unable to navigate the world by themselves. By extension, the immediate family and the larger society suffers as well. Here are a few effects of bad parenting on children.

1. Poor Mental Health

Exposure to abuse and hostility increases the likelihood of developing anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder.

2. Low Performance in and Out of School

Abused or neglected children find it hard to perform like other children. This can be in the form of poor concentration during classroom activity, poor grades and truancy.

3. Low Self Esteem

Children of parents who are control freaks grow up to think their parent’s inadequacies are their fault. They see their parents’ obsessive desire for control over them as a sign that they cannot function well on their own.

4. Depression

Children who are victims of abuse whether physical, verbal or sexual have higher tendencies of developing depression compared with  their counterparts who were not abused. This breeds a cynical view of the world and their family. It creates a kind of disconnect that is hard to bridge.

5. Behavioral Problems

Domestic violence is highly traumatizing, and it has a direct link to bad behavior in Children. Exposure to this harsh reality creates wounds that are difficult to heal. Adults find it hard to intellectualize such occurrences and its quite harder for children. As a result, they tend to display impulsive behaviors when interacting with their peers.

6. Delinquency

There are several theories that link delinquency to bad parenting.  Children from unhealthy homes have a hard time socializing properly with their age mates. They are often found wanting, breaking social codes or trampling on the rights of others.


How to Change And Recover From Bad Parenting?

It is never too late to fix your parenting mistakes. Moreover, where serious damages have already been done, this can be a really tough process. You can become a better parent and regain your child’s respect if you retrace your steps and do certain things differently.

1. Start with yourself

The first step to repairing your relationship with your child is to identify your flaws as a parent. This will serve as the map and compass of your journey. Try to figure out the times you have hurt your child intentionally or unintentionally. Make it up to them and sincerely apologize.

2. Identify the changes you want and go for it

When it comes to changes you will like to see in your child, outline them and approach the problem one after the other. Figure out the perfect way to be on the same page with your child. Discuss the underlying issue and reward their cooperation through every step.

3. Give your child the space they need

Pay close attention to the boundaries you have set for your child. Ensure they have enough space to be themselves around you.

4. The wrongs of your child and the punishment should be proportional

In prescribing punishments for their transgressions, focus on the wrong they have done and not what you are feeling. It saves you from over reacting and complicating matters.

5. Respect their views and emotions

Always remember that your children will have their own views in every matter. Respect them and don’t make them feel like their suggestions are useless.

From time to time, your toddler or teenager will throw tantrums. Let them be. Whatever needs to be discussed should be done when they are calm. Even as adults, we all act out sometimes. Do not try to make robots out of your children. Allow them to be human.