Parenting Styles


There are many variations and similarities in how parents raise their children. The similarities have been grouped together by Diana Baumrind, clinical and developmental psychologist, into four common parenting styles.

1) Authoritarian Parenting

The authoritarian parent is generally thought of as a disciplinary. They avoid negotiation and use strict discipline with punishment. When an authoritarian parent comes up with a rule, it is not usually explained, but expected to be followed. Expectations tend to be high and this style is less nurturing.

2) Permissive Parenting

Permissive parenting is also known as indulgent parenting, meaning children are generally allowed to do what they want, with little guidance or direction. This type of parenting usually looks more like a friendship than a parent-child relationship. With limited rules, children are generally expected to figure things out on their own. Communication tends to be open, but children will decide things for themselves. Permissive parents are usually warm and nurturing, with minimal expectations.

3) Uninvolved Parenting

An uninvolved parent will stay out of their children’s way and give them freedom. This could either be a conscious decision or a result of being less interested in parenting. There is generally no particular discipline style and the child gets to do what they want. Communication is usually limited, with little nurturing. In this parenting category, there are also few or no expectations of children.

4) Authoritative Parenting

Authoritative parents are generally reasonable and nurturing, while setting clear expectations. Children raised with this type of parenting usually demonstrate the ability to think for themselves. This style is thought to be the most beneficial. Communication is usually frequent and appropriate, the parenting style is nurturing, and expectations and goals are stated clearly, with children’s input.

What is your parenting style?

It is rare that a parent fits neatly into any one single parenting style, but usually a combination. Reflecting on where you fit within the spectrum can be helpful in your relationship with your child.