4 Parenting Styles and their Effects on Kid’s Development and Behavior ( Which type are you?)


What are the different parenting styles? On what basis is parenting classified into different types? What are the effects of parenting styles on children’s behavior and their development? Which types of parenting styles are considered the best? Let us see in this article.

4 different parenting styles

In the 1960s, a psychologist named Diana Baumrind conducted a study on more than 100 pre-schoolers. She observed many dimensions in these children. These dimensions included their care and nurturing nature, communication style, maturity, and self-control. Based on these studies, Baumrind derived a closed relationship between the type of parenting style and children’s behavior.  In today’s article, I will brief you about these different parenting styles and their effects on kids.

4 Different Parenting Styles | Baumrind Parenting Styles

After extensive studies and observation, Baumrind (in the 1960s) and two other psychologists Maccoby and Martin (1983) defined four types of parenting styles. These are sometimes called the Baumrind parenting styles or Maccoby and Martin parenting styles. 

Based upon two different dimensions of parenting behavior- Demandingness and responsiveness, four parenting styles are derived.

Demandingness refers to how parents control their children’s behavior or demand their maturity to mould kids in the way they want.

Responsiveness refers to how accepting and sensitive the parents are to their children’s emotional and developmental needs.

The 4 parenting styles are – 
  1. Authoritative parenting
  2. Authoritarian parenting
  3. Permissive parenting
  4. Neglectful/ Uninvolved parenting

Let us have a look at each parenting styles and their impact on kids one on one.

#1. Authoritative parenting style

These kinds of parents are highly demanding and highly responsive. Authoritative parents set the outcome-oriented rules and regulations for their children, but they also take children’s views and feelings into consideration. They set the disciplinary rules for the kids to reinforce good behavior in children.

Authoritative parents provide the healthiest environment for kids to grow. They are affectionate and supportive. They also offer guidance and open discussion to meet the set goals for their children. These will have good impacts on children as there is good communication and a productive relationship between parents and children.

Authoritative parents are more nurturing and forgiving rather than punishing if the child fails to follow the rules. This can be said as a democratic kind of parenting.

Effects of authoritative parenting on kids
  • Children will exhibit good mental health- decreased levels of anxiety and depression.
  • They tend to be more independent.
  • The kids grow obedient.
  • They are happy and content.
  • There will be higher self-esteem because of an open and communicative environment at the home. 
  • The children will also develop good socio-emotional skills.

♦ Read: 10 Good Habits That You Should Instill Early in Children

#2. Authoritarian Parenting

Although authoritative and authoritarian parenting seems similar by names, the authoritarian kind of parenting style is highly demanding and less responsive and expects their children to follow those without any explanation. If the children ask “why”, parents generally answer as “because I said so.” They have high expectations for their children’s achievements. 

Authoritarian parents are unresponsive to their children and children’s say hardly matters. Parents set stern disciplinary rules and employ harsh punishment if children fail to follow the set discipline and rules. Authoritarian parenting has few negative impacts on children.

Effects of authoritarian parenting on kids
  • Children are generally less dependent and unhappy.
  • They possess low self-esteem as their point of view or opinions hardly matters.
  • The kids may also grow rebellious sometimes during the arguments.
  • They have poor academic skills as the fear and pressure are instilled in them to achieve success.
  • These kids exhibit poor socio-emotional skills.
  • They tend to grow emotionally weak and more tend to anxiety, pressure, suicidal thoughts, and drug usage.
  • Children may also grow as good liars to escape punishment or arguments. 

#3. Permissive Parenting Style

Permissive parents show low demanding and high responsiveness. They set very few rules and boundaries and they don’t believe in enforcing rules.

Permissive parenting is lenient parenting. Permissive parents are quite forgiving and allow self-regulation. They are quite nurturing and communicative with the kids and often more like a friend rather than a parent. This style of parenting encourages children to discuss their problems with their parents openly. This type of parenting generally gives the scope of self-discipline to the children, resulting in disciplinary and behavioral issues.

Effect of permissive parenting on kids
  • They generally cannot follow rules as they are not habituated to do so.
  • The children may face issues with self-control and self-discipline.
  • They may develop ego-centric behavior.
  • Such kids are generally good speakers but not very good listeners.
  • They may show poor academic progress due to a lack of discipline and self-control. 

#4. Uninvolved Parenting

In an uninvolved or neglectful parenting style, parents are less responsive and also less demanding. 

Parents do not set any boundaries or rules in this kind of parenting. In fact, they are uninvolved in their children’s lives and indifferent to their needs. Parents are unaware of the physical and emotional needs of the children.

The kids in this kind of parenting may face many issues.

Effect of uninvolved parenting on kids
  • The children show very little control over their emotions and become impulsive in nature.
  • They are more tend to face issues like depression, physical and mental abuse, etc.
  • Such kids can be easily carried away by fake/false friendships and also by social evils like drug addiction, alcohol abuse, etc.
  • They also may develop suicidal behavior in adolescence.

Although there is only one kind of parenting style dominating in each case, most of the parents use different parenting styles depending on the situation. 

Which parenting style is the most effective?

Wondering which kind of parenting is the best? As mentioned above, the authoritative parenting style is considered the most effective and provides the most nurturing and healthy environment for the kids to grow. I would personally recommend this kind of parenting to grow a positive attitude and confidence in children.

Saying this, I don’t mean that only parenting is the factor that can shape the children’s behavioral pattern. There are many other factors too that affect the kids. The factors like socioeconomic background, culture, ethics, and child temperament also play important role in shaping the personalities of the children.

So, we can say that the authoritative parenting style is the best recommended as it affects largely the child’s growth pattern but it is not only the factor that determines the child’s outcomes. 

When it comes to parenting, each parent has a unique parenting style. Each parenting aims at transforming the kid into a happy, healthy, kind, and responsible person while enjoying parenting as well.  

“Your children will become who you are, so be who you want them to be.”

Happy parenting!


About Author

A mom to eleven month old, Riddhi is interested in cooking, crafting and writing. She also volunteers for a newspaper.

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