Bad parenting affects a child in so many ways because parents are the pillars of their child’s growth. Of course, nobody is perfect, no matter how much we try to be, and that’s okay–but you definitely have to watch out for certain markers in your behavior that could be affecting your child negatively. In this article, we’ve rounded up the most common effects of bad parenting.
Bad Parenting | The Common Effects On Children
1. Inability To Have And Maintain Relationships
Nowadays, more people are becoming open-minded about several things, including parenting. However, more often than not, this means leniency. If a child is not punished for mistakes they make, they might think that what they are doing is always right. They will not be able to admit their mistakes or learn to take responsibility for things they have done wrong. This results in difficulty coexisting and making and maintaining relationships.
What you can do: Reprimand and punish your child only if necessary. Help them understand what they did wrong, why it is wrong, and what they can do to fix it.
2. Psychological Disorders
Bad parenting affects a child psychologically. Especially if there is physical or emotional abuse towards the child. One of the most common psychological disorders due to bad parenting is antisocial behavior. This can eventually lead to health problems, alcohol and substance abuse, and even increased likeliness of being involved in criminal activity as an adult.
Parenting styles which may trigger antisocial tendencies:
- parental drug abuse
- domestic violence
- harsh and inconsistent parenting
- maternal depression
- juvenile delinquency
What you can do: Improve education for parenthood and attend related seminars or program to prevent abuse.
3. Low Self-Esteem
A person’s attitude, self efficacy, and mental stability are cultivated at home. Children naturally want to please their parents in order to make them happy. However, sometimes, they will feel they are not good enough or they do not live up to their parents’ expectations. If a child is often belittled, criticized, neglected, and abused by one or both parents, they will most likely experience this as childhood trauma that leads to low self-esteem.
How to talk to a child with low self-esteem:
- be sensitive to what your child is feeling
- be patient and listen to them
- ask, do not assume
- do not punish your child immediately—ask what happened and then solve the problem
- avoid criticism, instead, be compassionate
What you can do: Reward your son or daughter if he or she does something good. The reward doesn’t need to be monetary or expensive. It can be by cooking their favorite meal, watching their favorite TV show together, or reading them their favorite book.
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Low self-esteem may lead to depression, especially if it’s left unaddressed. If a child is exposed to bad behavior such as violence and child abuse, it is possible for them to adopt these behaviors sooner rather than later.
Factors which contribute to childhood depression:
- parental depression
- lack of emotional support
- excessive physical punishment
- low level of support
- unhealthy expression of negative emotions
What you can do: Make them feel appreciated. Check in with them every once in a while about what they feel and how they are doing.
5. Behavioral Problems
Resilience is one of the most important things a parent should instill in their child. It covers coping socially, emotionally, physically, educationally, and behaviorally. A parent should be able to teach their child how to handle and cope with negative emotions in a healthy way. This will help avoid, or at least minimize, the child’s aggression.
What you can do: Whenever an issue or problem arises, guide them. Let them know you are there for them.
6. Academic Challenges
Many parents dedicate the majority of their time to work so that they can provide for their children. This is absolutely okay! However, when work begins replacing your child as a priority, it is possible to become inattentive. Inattentive parents who neglect educational needs may contribute to their child’s poor academic performance later on. Furthermore, harsh criticism also affects a child’s focus on academics. Children end up studying not because they see the merit in it, but because they have to please their parents.
What you can do: Appreciate and praise your child whenever they do well in school. Help them with their homework, attend school programs, and check up on them in school once in a while.
7. Possibility Of Poor Parenting In The Future
If a child grew up with a bad parent, chances are, he or she too will adopt similar negative parenting tactics once they have children of their own. Nobody intentionally commits to bad parenting. But if it’s what they saw from their parents and what they grew up experiencing, it is possible.
How to avoid bad parenting:
- always communicate
- involve yourself in your child’s activities, if possible
- adapt to society’s changes in raising children (i.e. do not hit them if they make a mistake, etc.)
- punish if necessary, but make them understand why
- reward them appropriately
- always tell them you love and care for them
Watch the clip below from tvoparents to learn more about how bad parenting affects a child:
Parenting literally takes years to practice. Nobody is perfect and there is no standard parenting style fit for every mom and dad. Different people face different situations which should be the basis for which positive parenting style to use. Hence, it is best to assess the situation and weigh the pros and cons of each style before implementing.
What can you say about bad parenting and what do you think are the characters of a good parent? Tell us in the comments section below.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2017 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.