OK, this month's Oprah had a great article on Helicopter Parents. Sorry, no link, the web site is not as thorough as one might think. It was a pretty decent article highlighting how today's parent is micro-managing and controlling, to even their adult children. The author sited parents who asked to have the job offer and benefits package sent to them when their college graduate is offered their first job. My favorite was a woman that drove 2 hours EACH WAY to do her son's laundry at college!
So, we all know that I have struggled in the past with not hovering. I try. And, actually, I thought I had been doing fairly well. I went to orientation, did the parent meetings alone, "made" Claire walk several blocks with her suitcase (the outrage! Just ask her, I am sure she will share the evil mother stories!) and sign herself in to the dorm. I thought I had been a pretty cool mom.
So today a woman calls me, for her daughter, asking for a sorority rec. She mentioned her daughter is up doing summer semester and would I write the rec for her for AXO** Some small talk ensued about college etc. and I explained how I like the fact that Claire is going to a smaller school and I feel that they are really reaching out to the parents to ease the transition. Somehow this turns to the conversation to, of course, the helicopter parent. How it is such an outrage that parents are pushing their way in to their young adult's college life -- e-mailing professors etc. etc. My excitement about the extra help I felt I was getting started to dwindle. (DAMN SELF CONFIDENCE) Yes, I understood. I shouldn't worry about whether laundry was free or not (it is at Claire's school!!). I hung up the phone feeling like a first time parent, fumbling all over the place.
Then I realized the reason she called in the first place...who is going through rush again??
We all have different parenting styles. What are your thoughts on this one? Has our need to create safe play enviroments (no more staying out til the street lights come on)caused us to be a generation of parents who over-schedule our children? Where else can this lead but to continuing to have total hands-on when they reach their teens and adulthood? When does it end?