All parents want to connect and be involved with their children. Children of involved parents generally feel more confident, assured, and have a higher level of self-esteem. They tend to excel in school and do well in extracurricular activities as well as with their hobbies.
But is there such a thing as too much involvement?
In a word – yes. It’s imperative when you’re becoming involved with your school-aged child’s activities and academics that you recognize the distinction between being an involved parent and a parent that is too involved.
It’s important that you don’t intrude too much into your child’s privacy. Children need their space as well as being able to develop their own skills, talents, and abilities. In our eagerness to help our children succeed, it’s tempting to want to step in and start doing things for them if they’re doing it incorrectly or inadequately. But remember – you had to learn, too, and this is their chance to learn on their own.
Be there to encourage and support your child, and offer praise at a job well done. But also remember to step back and allow your child to learn from their own mistakes and to develop their own way of doing things. There’s usually more than one way to do something and just because your child is doing it differently than you would doesn’t make it wrong. Who knows? You might learn little something from your child, as well.
Finally, encourage them to share their troubles with you so that you can help them sort through their problems. If they say that they don’t want to talk about it or they just need some time to figure things out for themselves, respect that need by letting them know you’re available whenever they need you. Allowing your child to figure out how to deal with their problems – with you there for support – is an integral part of growing up.