I was also taken back when I first read about it. While we all know about the different forms of parenting namely helicopter parenting, permissive parenting, authoritarian parenting, and tiger parenting, to name a few. This parenting style goes one step further. Snowplow parents clear a path, much like a snowplow clears the snow from the road, in hopes that their child will gain advantages and move ahead in life, education, and profession.
Helicopter parenting is more about parents who are paying a great deal of attention and are always worried. A snowplow parent takes it one step further and intervenes. For example: A helicopter parent would get upset and worried if their child came home with a bad grade, while a snowplow parent would take it one step further and call the school to yell at the teacher. A helicopter parent will hover over the child while he/ she does their home work, while a snowplow parent will actually do it themselves.
Are you a Snowplow parent?
“Ask yourself these questions: Am I am uncomfortable when my child is sad, angry, or distressed? If so, do I regularly intervene to prevent these emotions? Does my child often look to me to solve his or her problems or emotions as their first line of defense?”
“If the answer to these is ‘yes,’ a little self-exploration might help illuminate why you do this, and some thought around the short and long term impact of your snowplowing is worth consideration.”
How to break the pattern of Snowplow parenting?
It’s crucial for you as a parent to understand the importance of allowing your child to experience both success and failure, as it teaches critical social-emotional skills for a healthy life, now and as an adult. Clearing obstacles deprives the child of social-emotional learning.
While being emotionally present is an incredibly important part of being a parent and you should never shy away from that, every time you feel the urge to get involved and clear an obstacle, I suggest ask yourself questions like , ‘Can my child do this task on their own? If not, to what degree do I need to support them to build a sense of competence and efficacy so that the next time, they can do more?’”
The more you ask yourself these questions, it will become more and more natural to stop intervening altogether, or only in extreme cases.
Fears of “snowplow” parenting.
Research shows that helicopter parenting can have a negative effect on kids. They are less resilient, and less likely to take risks. They never develop proper coping skills or the maturity to make decisions on their own. Experts fear that children of snowplow parents will have similar issues—they won’t be able to handle failure or solve problems independently. Kids of snowplow parents may quit something instead of settling for second best.
In a world full of competition this parenting style is an immediate threat to parenting.
Related article : Why you should never do your child’s homework.
Hope this had given you some insight and forced you to ponder on your parenting style. Change Now, Its never too late.
Happiness and sunshine 🌼