Ten Signs of Bad Parenting that Can Ruin Children’s Lives

Mother scolding her daughter - an example of bad parenting.

Parenting is the most demanding job in one’s life. It ensures no leaves, no rest, no paychecks, and above all, round-the-clock toiling. Parenting is a huge responsibility that is physically and emotionally exhausting. The stakes are high, and your one mistake can ruin your child’s life.

Parents have to deal with all kinds of tantrums of their kids persistently. Sometimes they even have to handle their adamant, impatient and aggressive behavior. Even with the availability of a plethora of articles and books on Parenting, you have to figure out what to do with your angel on your own.  With every passing day, you gain experience, and you try to learn what are the dos and don’ts, what is good and what is not for your baby. 

In a nutshell, you have to design and implement your own action plan. 

But these are some proven bad parenting traits that adversely affect a child’s mental well-being, seriously harm their psychology, and ultimately impair their future.

1. Neglect

A child demands a lot of affection and attention. Nowadays, as both the parents are working, they don’t have time to spare with their child. Even when they are home, they are glued to their mobile screens. They quieten up their inquisitive child or give grumpy replies. This behavior weakens the emotional bond between the child and the parent and makes the kid reserved and shy.

Spending quality time with children is a must to raise an emotionally mature adult. 

2. Setting bad examples

Kids are like a mirror; what they see and hear, they do. Be a good reflection for them. – Kevin Heath.

You and your actions set forth the path your child will travel upon. Parents pass on most of their qualities to their children. So, stop and look at the mirror before you blame your child for their behavior. Your child is a reflection of your habits and qualities. For example, if you happen to be an unorganized person, your child will acquire your trait. If you misbehave with a person in front of them, they may repeat the same with their friends. If you tend to get angry often, they will also get enraged quickly.

3. Comparing with others

Every child is unique and has their own pace and style of doing things. They are born with a creative and imaginative mind. They learn from their surroundings and try to do things people do but in their unique way. When you compare them with another child of their age, they tend to develop bad qualities like jealousy and resentment. Even when you tell them to stick to the footsteps of their siblings, they tend to develop a grudge against them. Comparing your child with others is a warning sign of Bad Parenting. If you do this constantly, this will heavily burden them mentally.

4. Too many expectations

As not every person is perfect, so not every child is a genius. Parents want their children to do everything they were unable to do. But they don’t understand that they are their child. Expecting that their child should always be the first, must get 100% in everything they do, is Bad Parenting. When you have too many expectations from your child, you tend to ignore his hard work to achieve the target, and you tend to compliment him less.

5. Controlling their future

Decision-making is a skill that improves over time. A parent is responsible for providing a healthy atmosphere in which a child develops this expertise. So that they can make decisions coolly even in nail-biting situations, and above all, they learn to accept the consequences of the decisions they make.

When your child is small, he needs your expertise and guidance. He learns from you every minute task. But when he is capable enough to understand what is suitable for him, he must be left to make his own decisions. These decisions are primarily based on his upbringing. He must be allowed to decide his career choice based on his interests. You can suggest and advise him if there are any wrong decisions but must not enforce him to follow a path.

6. Physical and emotional abuse

Praise your children openly, reprehend them secretly. – W Cecil

Physical abuse is the most severe trait of Bad Parenting. 

Always remember, “To err is human, to forgive is divine.” Everybody makes a mistake, and in the case of a child, the error is generally inadvertent.  

When a child honestly acknowledges his wrongdoing, parents must accept and forgive. As a result, there will be fewer blunders in the future.

Keep a soft tone while explaining things. Try to give less advice and more encouragement. 

Reprimand them but to a limit. Disciplining the child is also essential, but doing it in front of everyone lowers their self-confidence. Set up boundaries and structured rules for your child to follow to minimize the chances of making faults.

7. Fighting among yourselves

Having a brawl with your spouse in front of the kids diminishes both of your respect in their eyes. And if the fight is an everyday affair, the kids are likely to be emotionally depressed when they grow up. They will have problems with their relationship and even coping up with their career.

If you often quarrel with your spouse and let your child witness, you harm their present and future.

8. Overprotective

Children must do some chores on their own depending on their age. 

Not letting the kid be independent and too much pampering results in incompetency and low self-confidence. If you always shield your child and don’t let them solve their problems, they become fearful and are unable to take risks.

Sometimes, parents are overprotective with the child when they are toddlers, which ends in the slow growth and development of the child. The child must be a helping hand in the house to learn to be responsible.

Based on the child’s age, they must be a part of the household chores.

9. Giving them no privacy

Everyone needs their personal space. Privacy is required in all relationships, whether it is with your spouse, parents, or child. Everyone enjoys the company of people their age. A good parent must not encroach on the private space of the child.

10. Discipline

 A person develops physically, mentally, and emotionally in his childhood.

 A defined set of rules are a must for a child to develop into a successful individual. They must know the boundaries and the outcomes of crossing them. This does not mean a parent has to be strict above an end. Rigid Parenting also results in fearful and anxious children. So, good parents must know the upper and lower limit of disciplining their children.

In brief, the traits that a good parent should develop are:

  1. Always make efforts to understand your child.
  2. Support the child in times of need.
  3. Respect their feelings.
  4. Set good examples which they can follow.
  5. Never lie in front of the child.
  6. Physical abuse is a strict no.
  7. Praise them for their efforts.
  8. Give them your affection.
  9. Never compare them with others.
  10. Don’t involve yourself in unhuman behavior in front of the kids.
  11. Give your child a say in the house.
  12. Do not fight with your spouse in front of the child.
  13. Don’t pamper the child too much.
  14. Let your child be independent.
  15. Be a good listener.


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