What are the four parenting styles that shape your child’s future?

Parenting is one of the most challenging yet rewarding jobs in the world. Every parent wants their child to grow up to be a well-rounded and happy adult. However, there are different approaches to parenting, and each approach can have a significant impact on a child’s future. In this article, we will discuss four parenting styles that can shape a child’s future.

What are Parenting Styles?

Parenting Styles refers to the overall approach that a parent takes when raising a child. The four commonly recognized parenting styles are authoritative, authoritarian, permissive, and uninvolved or neglectful parenting.

Authoritative Parenting Style


Authoritative parenting style is one of the most effective and balanced styles of parenting. It is a democratic style of parenting in which parents set clear boundaries, rules, and consequences. It is characterized by parental warmth and support, interaction, and high expectations for the child’s behavior and achievement.

Authoritative parents listen to their children, support them, and provide guidance as needed. They set high, but realistic expectations for their children, and work collaboratively to achieve them. This approach helps children develop a strong sense of self-worth, self-discipline, and emotional regulation.

Pros and Cons


  • Effective in raising confident and successful children
  • Children tend to have better social skills and self-esteem
  • Children can handle frustration and stress better
  • Children have better academic performance


  • May be time-consuming initially in setting clear boundaries and expectations
  • Children may resist discipline and boundaries initially

Authoritarian Parenting Style


Authoritarian parenting style is characterized by high demands, control, and rigidity. It is a highly structured and rule-driven approach to parenting. Parents expect obedience from their children without questioning, and punishment is often used as a means of control.

Authoritarian parents tend to be less nurturing and express less warmth and support towards their children. They have a high need for control and may not be open to negotiation or alternative viewpoints. This approach can lead to children feeling afraid or resentful towards their parents.

Pros and Cons


  • The child is highly disciplined and obedient
  • Clear expectations and rules
  • Controlled, structured, and predictable environment


  • The child may have low self-esteem and lack confidence
  • Children may have difficulty making decisions and taking responsibility
  • May lead to behavioral problems, aggression, or mental health problems such as anxiety and depression.

Permissive Parenting Style


Permissive parenting style is characterized by liberal, undemanding, and uninvolved parenting. It is a laissez-faire approach to parenting, where parents are more like friends than authority figures. They are lenient on rules and expectations, and there is often little evaluation of the child’s behavior.

Permissive parents tend to be warm and affectionate towards their children, but they may not provide the structure, limits, and guidance that children need to develop self-discipline, responsibility, and self-regulation.

Pros and Cons


  • High level of warmth and affection
  • Freedom and flexibility for children
  • Child feels significant and valued
  • Can promote creativity and imagination in children


  • May lead to disciplinary and behavioral problems of children
  • Children may take advantage of their freedom and act selfishly
  • May make children overly dependent on others and lacking in self-control and self-regulation

Uninvolved or Neglectful Parenting Style


Uninvolved or neglectful parenting is characterized by a lack of involvement and concern for the child’s needs. Parents may have little interaction with their children or provide minimal supervision, support, and guidance. The child is usually left on their own to meet their basic needs.

Uninvolved parents may have their own personal problems, such as mental health issues or substance abuse, which prevents them from being available for their children.

Pros and Cons


  • None


  • Children may develop behavioral and emotional problems
  • Children may be at risk of physical and emotional neglect or abuse
  • Children may have developmental delays and academic problems
  • Loss of trust in relationships, lack of self-worth, and self-esteem.


Each parenting style has a different effect on a child’s development and future. Authoritative parenting styles are considered the most effective and balanced style of parenting, while authoritarian styles can be controlling, and permissive parenting styles can lack structure and guidance. Uninvolved parents are usually not considered parenting since there is a lack of guidance and support given to their children; however, they can significantly impact a child’s life in a negative way. Parents should consider the future wellbeing of their child when choosing their parenting style and should modify it as needed over time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is the most effective parenting style?

The most effective and balanced style of parenting is Authoritative parenting style, which has a mix of support, clear boundaries, and consequences to help children develop self-regulation, self-discipline, and self-confidence, while also maintaining a warm and positive relationship.

2. Can parenting styles change over time?

Yes, parenting styles are not set in stone, and they may change over time as children grow and the parenting context changes, such as the arrival of new siblings, or changes in family circumstances or culture.

3. Can parents use different parenting styles with different children?

Yes, parents can use different parenting styles with different children depending on their temperament, developmental stage, and other factors. It is essential to adjust the parenting style based on the child’s needs.

4. How can parents choose the right parenting style?

Parents can choose their parenting style based on their values, culture, and personal preference. However, they should also consider their children’s needs and personality when making their choice. Parents who are unsure or struggling with their parenting can seek help from a counselor or parenting coach.

5. How do parenting styles affect a child’s future?

Parenting styles can significantly impact a child’s social, emotional, and psychological development, as well as their physical health and academic success. Children being raised by authoritative parents tend to be confident, self-disciplined, and achievement-focused; meanwhile, children raised by authoritarian parents can have difficulty making decisions, low self-esteem, and poor mental health outcomes. Children raised by permissive parents may lack self-control and have behavioral problems or feel entitled. Children raised by uninvolved or neglectful parents can have developmental delays, lack trust in relationships, and have poor self-worth and self-esteem.


Baumrind, D. (1967). Child care practices anteceding three patterns of preschool behavior. Genetic psychology monographs, 75(1), 43-88.

Dwairy, M., Achoui, M., Abouserie, R., & Farah, A. (2006). Parenting styles in Arab societies: A first cross-regional research study. The Journal of Psychology, 140(2), 97-110.

Lamborn, S. D., Mounts, N. S., Steinberg, L., & Dornbusch, S. M. (1991). Patterns of competence and adjustment among adolescents from authoritative, authoritarian, indulgent, and neglectful families. Child Development, 62(5), 1049-1065.

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