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Parenting comes in all shapes and forms. But, you tend to settle into one specific method and philosophy (whether you are aware of it or not). While you are not being judged for the style you select, it is important to know where you stand on the spectrum. Take this quiz to determine your personal parenting style.
1. You receive an email from your child’s teacher, asking you to contact them. You:
A) Assume your child is in trouble and send them to their room before calling their teacher.
B) Tell your child you received an email and ask them if they know what their teacher wants to talk about.
C) Completely forget about it and remember only when the teacher calls you a few days later.
2. How often is your child allowed to go on playdates?
A) Monthly – if all of their chores are done first and it doesn’t interfere with their after-school activities.
B) Weekly – you often host the dates in your home.
C) Daily – your child is allowed to play with whoever they want, whenever they want.
3. Your child asks you to take them to the movies but you tell them, “No.” They ask why. You say:
A) “Because I said so.”
B) “Today is not a good day because I have a few errands to run.”
C) “Because I’m busy, but call your friend and see if they can take you.”
4. Do you believe in time-outs?
A) Absolutely – all children need to take a break when they aren’t behaving.
B) Sometimes – talking it out and using lots of positive reinforcement is better though.
5. How often do you express love through hugs and kisses?
A) Sometimes – I wasn’t really brought up to show emotion.
B) Often – I want my children to know how much I love them.
C) Dozens of times a day – I want my children to know it’s all about them!
Mostly A’s – Authoritarian
If you answered mostly A’s, you are most likely an authoritarian parent. Characteristics that mark this style are parents who set the rules and expect your children to follow them with no questions asked. You don’t involve your children in problem-solving when challenges arise, so they learn whatever you say goes. You believe in punishments, like grounding or time-out, and you have high standards that you expect your children to achieve. The words, “Because I said so,” often come out of your mouth, and you don’t trust your children at certain ages to make the right choice, so you tend to try to control their behavior. You tend to not show a lot of emotion and are happiest when your children obey you and make you proud through their achievements.
If you answered mostly B’s, you are most likely an authoritative parent. Characteristics that mark this style are parents who set rules and expect your children to follow them, but you sometimes allow exceptions to your rules. You are willing to explain why you set rules and keep your child’s feelings in mind when you make decisions and set limits. When it comes to discipline, you tend to avoid punishments and focus on positive consequences. You may have a behavior chart set up or use a lot of praise to express your happiness when positive behavior is observed.
If you answered mostly C’s, you are most likely a permissive parent. Characteristics that mark this style are parents who don’t really set rules. You may shrug off bad behavior and use the line, “Kids will be kids.” Sometimes, you get caught up wanting to be a friend, that you forget you have to be a parent. You encourage your children to share their feelings with you and participate in any meaningful discussions, but when it comes to discipline, anything goes (or not!).
Each parenting style has a different effect on children. It also speaks volumes about your own personal upbringing and personality. For more information about parenting styles, click here to watch a video clip.