Helicopter parents may hamper child’s development

Child development

Child development experts say overprotective fathers and mothers who hover over their children may be unhealthy influences in the long run.

Their interference discourages the children from being independent and taking responsibility for their own lives, said HELP University's Faculty of Behavioural Sciences dean Dr Goh Chee Leong.

Dr Goh warned that the children would, in the long run, not be able to make decisions for themselves, the Star online reported.

Child development expert Ruth Liew believes the phenomenon is a result of the increasing level of education among parents.

"Helicopter parents" like to take charge of their children's lives in all aspects, especially to ensure future success, she said.

She noted that they also have more access to information about parenting through the Internet and social media.

While this is good, she said, it could be detrimental to the children's health if parents go overboard with their information.

According to Liew, guidance means showing the way without taking over the task. It is important to allow mistakes (not the dangerous ones) to happen because children learn from them, she stated.

Marriage and family therapist Charis Wong said overprotection would lead to a spoon-fed generation unable to make its own decisions and cope with responsibility.

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