When raising a child, one can use different parenting styles, ranging from more severe to tolerant and friendly attitudes. In order to develop normally, children need rules and structure, but in a manner that still allows them some freedom and gets them accustomed to decision making. On the other hand, a too liberal education fails to teach them about responsibilities and impairs their social skills.

Permissive parenting is a method where the parents adopt a more relaxed view when it comes to raising their children. This means they will have less rules or demands, and will avoid confrontation with their children. The rules, if any, will be inconsistent and the parent will not always insist to have them respected. Permissive parents may look more like a friend and often try to bribe the children with toys or food to get them to behave. It’s good to try and be friends with your children, but you have to make sure your authority remains intact, otherwise things will get out of control.

Children with permissive parents lack self-discipline and could grow to be insecure and have poor social skills. Nobody is trying to imply that giving your children short haircuts, very early waking hours and a bundle of duties and chores will result in them becoming the most responsible adults, but no discipline will most likely leave them unprepared for normal living within society.

There are studies that show that permissive parenting may be linked with underage drinking, substance abuse and misconduct. Because of the lack of boundaries and guidelines at home, children with permissive parents will have difficulty in learning and will be less motivated than their peers. They will have faulty social skills and will have trouble adapting and respecting the rules imposed at school or, later on, at work. In more extreme cases, the child could have to be sent to juvenile detention, and then short haircuts would definitely be part of the rigorous discipline they try to instill there. Know when and how to punish your children; while not doing anything about their misconduct is wrong, punishing them too harshly may have long-term effects on their self-esteem and confidence as well, and could hinder your communication together. For example, it may be pleasing for a mother to go shopping and buy some cool baby shoes that she liked, but offering them has to be done in the right context; don’t buy them because you caved in to your toddler’s emotional pressure, or when they are supposed to be punished. Rather use them as a reward for good behavior or for completing chores around the house.

We always hear that this or that child is “spoiled”; there’s nothing wrong with spoiling your children from time to time, or rewarding them when they deserve it, but if they receive gifts just because they asked for them, they will start believing they are entitled to have anything and will lack the ability to share with others. If parents don’t find a way to set limits, the children won’t develop the ability to tolerate frustration and stress situations. Limits are vital to a child’s emotional development. By being permissive and liberal, parents are actually failing their kids, creating damage that is difficult to correct.