Parenting Tips Every Parent Should Know

Updated: Oct 24

A father sits with his son using parenting 101 tactics to have an important conversation

Many parents are unaware of the need for parenting education until they’re faced with situations they don’t know how to handle. Here are some general tips that all parents should know.

Key takeaways:

  • Your parenting style can influence your child’s health, self-esteem, and relationships.

  • There are four types of parenting styles: research has found authoritative to be most beneficial for healthy child development.

  • No matter what parenting style you use, there are some basic components that all parents should strive for.

  • There’s no such thing as a perfect parent.

  • If you’re struggling with parenting skills, counseling can help.

Parenting is difficult, even if we think we’ve got it under control. Sometimes, we know what kind of parents we don’t want to be, but that knowledge doesn’t turn us into the ideal parents we want to be. So we’ve put together a brief parenting 101 guide with the basics we think every parent should know.

What’s your parenting style?

First, it’s important to know your parenting style. Your parenting style can impact your child’s health and development, as well as their self-esteem and relationships. No pressure, right?! Researchers have identified four primary parenting styles:

  • Authoritarian: These are the parents that use “Because I said so” as the rule of law. Their focus is on obedience, rather than problem-solving. They use punishments instead of positive reinforcement, which often shames a child for making a mistake rather than teaching them how to learn from it. Children who grow up in this type of environment often struggle with anger, low self-esteem, and self-worth, which can have long-term consequences.

  • Authoritative: Authoritative parents focus on explaining the reasoning behind rules. They center their relationship with their child as opposed to obedience. They set rules and consequences, but they’re considerate of their children’s feelings. This doesn’t mean that they allow their child to run the household; rather, children are heard and validated, but parents are still the ultimate authority. They use positive discipline such as praise and rewards as opposed to doling out punishments.

  • Permissive: There are some rules here, but parents may struggle to enforce them or follow through with consequences. They don’t get too involved unless there’s a problem. They’re likely to cave in with children, allowing them to have extra privileges, which teaches them that consequences are negotiable. Kids who grow up with permissive parents are more likely to struggle academically and have difficulty with authority and rules.

  • Uninvolved: Uninvolved parents take a hands-off approach to parenting. There are few household rules and children are unlikely to receive guidance or parental attention. These parents can be neglectful, even if it’s not always intentional. These parents may struggle with issues of their own, such as mental health or substance abuse issues, or be overwhelmed with trying to survive. Children raised by uninvolved parents are more likely to struggle with poor self-esteem and academic performance and may have frequent behavioral problems.