It’s better if it’s not you or your spouse, according to best selling author and psychologist Lori Gottlieb. In an article in the Atlantic she says she noticed a trend among her young adult patients of depression and anxiety, difficulty choosing or sticking to a career path, poor relationships and a general sense of lack of purpose. There was no parental abuse here, in fact they all “adored” or called their parents their “best friends in the whole world.” Gottlieb determined these parents had in fact done too much for their kids when they were little, turning them into rudderless adults. Her advice to the next generation of parents:
- Don’t overpraise for behaviour that doesn’t really merit praise.
- Ask yourself if you’re serving your own emotional needs by being too involved.
- Don’t give your kids an overdose of parenting (such as the parent who brags about never missing a game).
- Don’t smother kids. Let them experience their activities on their own.
- Be a parent, not a friend. Stay focused on discipline and respect.