Parenting is easy but good and supportive parenting is very hard.
In this article, we are going to discuss every point related to supportive parenting. How to practice it and much more. Also going to answer some of your basic questions related to this parenting technique.
Do you know what is Autonomy supportive parenting?
It is a type of parenting in which children get involved or are provided with the authority to make any decisions. But it doesn’t mean they can make any age-restricted decisions.
The main benefit of autonomy-supportive parenting is children can do their work by own. It makes them responsible and committed to their promises.
It allows them to make decisions wisely rather than based on their feelings.
Autonomy supportive parenting didn’t limit the child but it doesn’t mean they are allowed to do things that are not appropriate for them.
We can say that it’s a kind of loving parenting but with patience, understanding, and supportive skills.
But you may be wondering that how can you be a supportive parent because if you are not supportive there’s no way to autonomy-supportive parenting.
So without wasting any time let’s move to our first topic that is;
How to Be a Supportive Parent:
The first step towards being a supportive parent is having a good relationship with your child. Having a good bond is very necessary for a child’s development.
Children always look up to their parents first because parents are the priority for every child. Being a supportive parent is not that difficult you need to focus on a very few points that are given below.
- Try to be as empathetic as you can. You have to see many things from children’s point of view. Try to understand their feelings as a kid.
- If they go through any trauma never neglect it. It might be not that happening for you but it is for them.
- Try to be a student with them. Get engaged with them while studying. Try to develop an interest in things they love doing.
- Play with them. Playing with children makes them feel very good and comfortable.
- If they lose any sports or don’t get good grades never demotivate them. Be optimistic and look towards their weaknesses and try to correct them.
- Always ask about every small or big thing. Ask about their school, friends, hobbies, etc. Doing this from the very first day allows them to be open while sharing anything related to their life.
- Do not ever be judgemental.
- From your busy schedule make time to spend with them. You can either spend some family time at home or can go outside too. Always talk about your life experiences in a good way.
- If they did any mistakes do correct them but never scold them extremely.
- The biggest mistake parents do is scolding their children in front of people. It loses their confidence level and by doing so you are not an example of being a supportive parent.
- Always be honest. If you make any promises to them try your best to fulfill them.
- Respect their emotions and appreciate their little efforts.
- Support their dreams and never compare them with other kids.
These are some basic points. You know your child better than anyone else. Try to discover different strategies to make them feel that their parents are supportive of them.
Being supportive is very important. It allows your children to be successful in their life. Being a supportive parent allows being very beneficial for your child and yourself too.
It makes a healthy environment worth living for your child.
How to Practice Autonomy Supportive Parenting:
Practicing autonomy-supportive parenting is not that hard you have to be focused on a few skills to develop this parenting strategy.
1. Provide Unwavering Compassion:
Providing your child with unconditional love is the way towards autonomy-supportive parenting.
All children want and deserve unconditional love. If you live with your parents means your child’s grandparents there are many chances of excessive love.
But if you don’t then you have to be very loving.
It is observed that those children are more confident that are loved unconditionally. Because they know that if they did anything wrong they still get love.
So they try to perform new things on their own without any fear of failure. Being a confident child doesn’t mean they are misbehaving.
And if they do so you have to correct them because nobody likes misbehaved children. There’s no need to yell because it creates unwanted pressure on children.
Elle’s mother asks her to clean the room in an hour but she didn’t do it.
Rather than scolding her to clean up the room, her mother needs to make her understand the responsibilities gently without any yelling.
It allows Elle to understand things more calmly and as a result, she will not do the same mistake next time most probably.
2. Give Your Child the Chance to Make Appropriate Decisions at the Right Age:
Allow your child to make decisions. Give them responsibilities if they are responsible they are better at trying and finding new things.
Good decision-making comes from trials and failures.
You can start decision-making practice from a very early age. Ask your child about dress selection, which storybook to read, what colors look more pretty on them etc.
Listen to them not just ask if you want to make them good decision-makers. If they can’t decide encourage them and provide them with fewer options.
They are younger so their choices are also like their age so don’t ever judge them and make fun of them.
Don’t ask for every decision only ask for things that are suitable for their age.
Respect their decisions. It also helps in developing healthy self-esteem. Almost all children love to be independent so let them be. And appreciate their efforts.
The more they feel independent the more they get responsible. And you may know responsible children make good decisions.
3. Help Your Child Sense Their Worth and Competence:
Make them feel valued and competent. If you don’t value them they will do the same.
If you ask them for anything and they tell you about it. Firstly you have to listen to them very carefully, try to feel their feelings and emotions.
Put yourself in their shoes and make decisions after it. When deciding on vacations places ask their opinions too and value them.
And if you feel they didn’t give a good opinion or is not like the way you want things to go talk to them. Communications remove gaps between anyone.
Making them feel competent also helps them to get success at various stages of life.
4. Demonstrate Empathy and Employ Active Listening Skills:
Everyone wants real empathy but children want it more. So show your children that you care about them. Empathy and Active listening skills are pillars for autonomy-supportive parenting.
Listen to them carefully sometimes children don’t know how to express their feelings so to understand them you have to listen actively.
When they are communicating with you focus on them and their words. Do not do any other work stuff and if you are using a mobile phone don’t do it.
It makes them feel invaluable which results in no discussion related to their personal lives.
Ask them about their choices if they are angry or sad don’t shout or scold them gently ask them. You need a lot of patience too.
Stormi got failed the math test. Her parents know that she is a little weak in maths. Her parent didn’t scold or punish her for the first time they tried to motivate her and understand her.
They develop new studying skills for Stormi which include maths games such as math dice, money bags, etc. It helps Stormi to get better in maths and as a result, she got good grades in mathematic.
Stormi tried to tell her parents about her weakness. She does tell them but doesn’t know how to express her feelings properly.
But her parents understand her incomplete words too but active listening skills.
How to Implement Autonomy Supportive Parenting:
There is a great difference between practicing and implementing. Some key points will help you to guide how you can implement autonomy-supportive parenting. So let’s have a look at it.
1. Provide Acceptance:
Accept your child in every way.
Acceptance gets decreases when parents increase their expectations. Do expect good from them but don’t pressurize them. Give them excess love and care.
For example, parents want their children to get top rankings in their class it creates pressure on them which is very bad and stressful for the child.
But what’s a good way to ask your child to get good grades, to get good grades they didn’t get that much pressure as a result they may get top rankings.
2. Help your Children Feel Competent:
You have to make them feel and genuinely component. But how?
Allow them to do their work independently from an early age the more they try the more they get to know about things.
Honor their efforts. Provide them with small challenges and if they do only 10% of it appreciate them.
3. Treat your Child Like a Unique Person:
Make your child feel unique by treating them like so. All children are different and unique in their way what you have to do is discover their uniqueness.
You can discover by observing their interests, what inspires them the most.
And if you feel that they didn’t take any interest in good and helpful things expose them to different activities such as sketching, sports-related stuff, reading, singing, etc.
4. Support your Children in Achieving Autonomy:
Children don’t want to be controlled by anyone so let them do their age-appropriate things independently.
Provide them with real choices and let them struggle. It makes them more responsible.
Other Specifics of Autonomy Supportive Parenting:
The other specifics of Autonomy supportive parenting are discussed below:
- Progress takes time you have to trust your child to get succeed in their life. If you trust them the result will be soo great.
- Ask about their perspectives also for example when they are leaving for school ask them what they want to eat in lunch.
- Give them a chance to try and learn. Be patient and wait for the results.
- Make them responsible. If they feel a responsibility as a pressure try to divide them.
- For example: rather than asking to pack their school bags for the whole week first ask them to do it on alternate days. And if they do it properly you can make them more responsible from the upcoming week.
- Remember every child is different so never compare them.
- The learning period of everyone is different so it may take soo long for you or it may take only a few days.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Also Read: What is Cloth Diaper Liners?
Being a supportive parent is very beneficial and implementing Autonomy Supportive Parenting is one of the best ways to develop your child. You need a lot of patience for this.
I hope that this article helps you to know everything about autonomy-supportive parenting. How you can implement and practice it.
As a mother of four very energetic children, Emilia knows how chaotic motherhood can be. She’s learned a lot of lessons along the journey so far and loves sharing the tips & tricks she’s picked up over the years with anybody else on the same life path.