When it’s time to land the helicopter

brownnestMore than ever, experts agree that helicopter parenting — or over-parenting — is resulting in serious problems for young adults. Are we raising a generation of “boomerang” kids? Why are so many young people afraid of taking risks? And why do today’s parents dread the empty nest? ┬áIn my newest column for Michigan Prime, I offer a personal view on this issue — and I recommend a brand-new, important book on how to avoid the pitfalls of over-parenting. Look for the print edition in your Sunday Detroit Free Press, or click here to read the column online (page 4).

5 thoughts on “When it’s time to land the helicopter

  1. A very good article. I only had one of my three children attend college and it seems I was so busy working i didn’t have time to worry about how she was doing.

  2. Very good article, Cindy. We saw “helicoptering” at the orientation. The Dean of Students asked parents to not “hunt for their children” either physically or via text, and some parents did it anyway! Seriously! They couldn’t let their child have five hours of time with their fellow students and new advisers and choose classes without interference. Unreal.

    • Thank you, Lynne — we were told the same thing at U of Notre Dame. When we dropped Nate off, we were told NOT to stand there and weep, or linger around the campus. It amazed me that parents HAD to be told such things at orientation — but it’s true!

  3. I loved loved loved this article. I am the mother of a 12 year old boy and I am pushing him toward independence as my parents did me. I can appreciate his growth and I am always encouraging him to “figure it out yourself”. Thank you for this article!

    • Thank you, Teresa! When my son, my only child, was a little boy, I did everything I could to encourage him to speak up for himself, one step at a time. Sometimes I’d drop him off to do his own shopping at the local train shop (with his own allowance money) to learn how to make purchases and talk to people — without my doing it for him …. that sort of thing. He became a very adventurous young man, and now travels all over the world for his job — and he’s not quite 30. I think we owe it to our kids to show them how to be independent. It is scary to see how many young adults today are fearful of taking risks. I would encourage every parent to read the book mentioned in the column. Thanks again for writing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.