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They hover over their children long after school, taking decisions for them which they are old enough to take for themselves.

There is an article in the grauniad this morn. I will not quote all of it although all of it is good.

http://education.guardian.co.uk/higher/new...2234468,00.html

Just one little quote, one of the types of helicopter parent:

"The white knight

"This parent appears at short notice to resolve awkward situations. Once resolved, the idea is the white knight will fade anonymously into the background.

"The black hawk

"Dreaded by teachers and educational administrators, the black hawk is unique among helicopter parents due to their willingness to go to any lengths - legal or illegal - to give their offspring a positional advantage. Particularly lethal when elected to parent-teacher associations."

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This doesn't just apply to tertiary education - it's just as rampant in primary and high schools. I said something similar to the media here in my role as union president and got front page headlines.

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Though not an educator or in the system, I see parents who for too long allow the kids to 'remain in the nest'. If you have a decent income, it can be very beneficial to be forced to confront the world on your own.

I believe it is particularly beneficial in learning to clean up after yourself, how to take care of common domestics, etc.

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Though not an educator or in the system, I see parents who for too long allow the kids to 'remain in the nest'. If you have a decent income, it can be very beneficial to be forced to confront the world on your own.

I believe it is particularly beneficial in learning to clean up after yourself, how to take care of common domestics, etc.

Well I'm not an educator or in the system.... Interesting comment though -- your training that enables you to make those types of decisions is? Or, did you throw your own kids out when you thought the time was correct?

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Though not an educator or in the system, I see parents who for too long allow the kids to 'remain in the nest'. If you have a decent income, it can be very beneficial to be forced to confront the world on your own.

I believe it is particularly beneficial in learning to clean up after yourself, how to take care of common domestics, etc.

Well I'm not an educator or in the system.... Interesting comment though -- your training that enables you to make those types of decisions is? Or, did you throw your own kids out when you thought the time was correct?

No, never married, never been a parent.

I base it on my own experience, and watching what has happened to other people's kids. When things are done for you, there is no particular motivation to do them for yourself. Kids can be untidy (use your own definition of this), but when forced to rely upon themselves tend to develop good habits regarding cleaning, domestics, generally looking after oneself.

This is not always the case, however. One of my closest friends, who I have known for over 30 years... he's a pig. I used to share an apartment with him, and I was always doing the cleaning, washing, etc. My bright idea was to NOT do it, thereby forcing him to participate in the workload. Once things reached an unacceptable level, he'll start to clean.

Nope. Didn't work. He'd just move piles of clothing, sniff what he needed, iron if really necessary, etc.

Even today, he hasn't changed. His house is a mess. I really fear sitting down when there - never know what might be under the cushion. Don't even think about the kitchen - imagine the worst and it is comparable.

Anyways - I find that a lot of people, when forced look after themselves, rise to the challenge very well. Not always, though.

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I think with many more of today's parents than in the past, the "helicoptering" is more about over-protecting them from what they perceive to be this dreadful, dangerous, terror-filled world and not realising that kids need to be able to take educated risks, make independent decisions and take consequences for their actions. Many parents also seem to believe that their offspring won't love them if they make rules, impose sanctions and generally keep to the hard line. It's utter rubbish as kids are far more likely to respect such things and often end up having no respect for parents who over-indulged them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am bound to say that there are worse things than being an overprotective parent; but then there are worse punishments than a lighthearted bit of derision in the Guardian!

"Empty nest syndrome" - which I am suffering right now - has certain compensations like finding the kitchen tidy if you left it tidy. On the other hand I understand why parents try to live their lives through their "children" long after they are children no more. I just think it is a mistake.

Soon enough they will have to cope on their own. Giving them the skills to do so is better than "hovering".

Oh and Jean is right, we get enough helicopters for a scene from Apocalypse Now around our secondary school :lol:

Edited by Derek McMillan
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