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What is Positive Parenting and The Four Kinds of Parenting?


What is positive parenting? Positive parenting has to do with the acts of raising children and building their personalities. Parenting does not have anything to do with biological relationships. It has so much to do with being available for a child. It also has to do with providing him or her with the love, care, and affection he or she needs. This includes protecting them for their growth into adulthood.  

There are different ways parents train their children which has a lot of effect on their behavior. Children exhibit or portray different kinds of behavior. This is largely due to how they are being brought up or trained. Positive parenting is very important. Your style of parenting can affect your child’s development mentally and physically. It can also determine the kind of environment your child will grow up in. 

In this article, we will explore what positive parenting and negative parenting are, the importance of parenting, the dimensions of parenting, and the four kinds of parenting. We will also explore the most effective parenting style. This is the one you are expected to adopt. We will explore the most harmful parenting style. Lastly, we will explore the type of parenting style you should adopt and why you should. 

Table of Content

What is Positive Parenting?

Consistency and routine are very important virtues that parents who want to offer positive parenting need to uphold. Positive parenting requires you to train your child in consideration of their age and stage of development. It also aims at teaching your children to socialize well with others and creating a growth mindset in them. Also it focuses on encouraging children rather than praising them. It focuses on bringing up independent children. 

What is Negative Parenting?

What is positive parenting and negative parenting

Putting your interest over your child’s interest is negative parenting. While it doesn’t have to be the case that you have to put your child’s interest over your interest all the time, you must make the best decisions in the best interest of your child. 

Importance Of Positive Parenting

Positive parenting is important for so many reasons. In this section, we will explore why positive parenting should not be taken with levity and its importance. 

  • Parents cater for all the needs of their children: For the first few years of a child’s life, the child is dependent on his or her parents for everything. This is why a parent or guardian has to be available for a child. They are to also provide all of his or her basic needs. 
  • Parents have to give their children academic values as much as they provide basic needs: Apart from caring for the children, parents need to also provide academic values for the children. This is what they give to their children to secure a bright future for them 
  • Parents instill values, customs, and traditions: For a society instilled with individuals of great values, there is the need for parents to instill in their children values, customs, and traditions that will help them grow into good citizens of the society. This is why parenting is important to uphold a value instilled in society. 

Dimensions of Parenting

There are two dimensions of parenting and they are what we will discuss in this section of this article.

All the types of parenting are based on these two dimensions of parenting and they are: 

  • Demandingness
  • Responsiveness


This dimension of parenting shows the degree to which a parent wants to control or take over the child’s life. 


This deals with the extent to which parents pay attention to or stay sensitive to their children’s needs both emotionally and physically. 

It is on these two dimensions of parenting that all types of parenting find their basis. 

Types of Parenting 

They are listed as follows:

  • Authoritative
  • Disciplinarian
  • Permissive
  • Neglective


Authoritative parents are highly controlling of their children and highly sensitive to them. They always want their children to achieve a lot and exhibit maturity. At the same time, they remain sensitive to their feelings and developments by being warm and receptive. 

They ensure that whatever rules or boundaries they set for their children, there is a foundational knowledge of why they should follow those rules. So their children know why they should do what they are told to do per time. They provide explanations and reasons for their children’s actions. Also, they give them a sense of awareness and teachings about values, morals, and goals. 

They discipline their children in such a way that they negotiate and regulate their behavior. This type of parenting style is known as the democratic parenting style. This is because there is respect for the children’s autonomy. The children have freedom and are trained to be independent. 

Characteristics of Children of Authoritative Parents

  • Happiness and Contentment
  • High Self Esteem
  • Independence
  • Social Activeness
  • Academic Stability 
  • Mental Health
what is positive parenting and happy children
A happy daughter and father


Parents that are disciplinarians are highly controlling of their children. They are also less responsive to them. The disciplinarian and Authoritative parents both have the common attribute of wanting their children to achieve a lot. However, the difference comes in their approach to making their children achieve. 

Disciplinarians give reasons such as “You have to do this because I say so”. They often subject their children to harsh punishment in a bid to gain total control over them. Parents like this are domineering and only want to see results not minding their feelings or developments per se. 

These parents are usually not attentive to the needs of their children. They justify the way they subject their children to harsh punishments by implying that they want their children to toughen up. 

Characteristics of Children of Disciplinarian Parents

  • Unhappiness
  • Dependent Nature
  • Insecurity
  • Low self-esteem
  • Low academic performance
  • Mental Distress
  • No adaptability skills 


This type of parenting involves a low level of control and a high level of sensitivity. Permissive parents do not set a lot of rules. They are always reluctant to make their children follow their rules. This is because their feelings override their controlling nature. They are very sensitive to the feelings of their children and do not want to disappoint them in any way. 

In essence, they are always very loving and nurturing but make little or no attempt to discipline their children. They approach parenting as being more like friends to their children than assuming the parental role to them. Also, they are lenient and have few restrictions for their children. They give complete freedom to their children without considering the consequences. They do not give motivation to their children. This is because they always care more about their children’s feelings than their achievements. 

Characteristics of Children of Permissive Parents 

  • Inability to follow rules. 
  • Loss of self-control.
  • Problematic Relationships and Social Interactions.
  • Selfishness and Egocentric Tendencies. 


Neglective Parenting as the name implies involves the uninvolved parenting style. Parents like this are not controlling nor are they sensitive to the needs of their children. They are just indifferent about the things their children do. Also, they do not set boundaries nor do they set standards for their children. 

They are emotionally distant from their children and do not encourage interactions with their children because they are too overwhelmed by their problems. As a matter of fact, they even fail to fulfill parental duties in their children’s academics such as attending school events or parents and teachers’ meetings. 

Parents in this category are sometimes victims of depression, physical abuse, or child neglect when they were kids. Some of them might have even been victims of unwanted pregnancies. This is why they provide no supervision to their children and are absent from their children’s lives. This is the most harmful parenting style. 

Characteristics of Children of Neglective Parents 

  • Impulsiveness
  • Strong Addicts 
  • Mental Issues
  • Suicidal Behaviors
  • Inability to Self-Regulate Emotions

The Most Effective Parenting Style

In all ramifications, the authoritative parenting style has proven to be positive and the most effective of all. This is because parents like this are not only building academically sound children, they are also building upright standing behavioral individuals. 

In other words, you are building academically sound and emotionally stable children. 

Permissive Parenting is the most common of the parenting styles these days. This is because parents tend to love their children to a fault and just want to please them all the way. However, fulfilling all of the wishes of your child can be harmful to both you and your child. Your child can start having a feeling of entitlement to the things that they wish for and might lose characters such as patience and self-restraint. Don’t think that by refusing to give them the things they want then you’re denying them if their happiness, think of it as looking out for their long-term happiness instead. 

The Most Harmful Parenting Style

The most harmful parenting style is the neglective parenting style. This is due to the non-involvement of parents in any aspect of their children’s life. They are absent from their children’s lives and are not there to train the child or instill in the child, certain values he or she should learn. Their unresponsiveness to their children will expose them to harmful events early in life. 

However, some traits from some other parenting styles can be harmful to children. Exclusively reprimanding children and disciplining them in front of people can cause harm to their self-esteem. Advising them all day with no form of encouragement can also pose a threat to things they will be able to achieve. Also, not showing affection to your child can as well be harmful to him or her and yourself. This can cause a sort of emotional disconnection between you and your child. 

You need to support your child and be proud of his or her achievements. Also, you need to set a structure and boundary for your child. You need to not compare your child with another child. Ensure that you make know that they are unique and see the uniqueness in them. 

Praise your children when they deserve it. Respect their feelings at all times, and do not be a bad example to your child by telling them to do what you say and not what you do. Do not overpamper them. Do not be overprotective. Most importantly, spend time with your child. No matter how busy your schedule is, ensure that you spend quality time with them. 

what is positive parenting and spending time with your children

Which One Should You Adopt? 

Specifically, it can’t be stated that you must adopt a style of parenting. This is because parenting is a dynamic issue and should be treated as such. 

Parents are unique and so are their children. This uniqueness in each of them will bring about diversities in the way they train and bring their children up. 

The truth remains that parents can’t all fall into one specific type of parenting style. This is because children are individually different from each other and can’t all be trained using the same parenting skills. Every child is special and unique so there is the need for parents to be flexible in style and adopt the best practices from each parenting style. There are times you need to be highly controlling and times when you need to be flexible enough to allow your feelings to lead. 


Train your children well. As a result of negative parenting, so many kids have suffered adverse effects. Teach them to be resilient and cope with whatever situation they may face. Teach them to study well and have empathy. Also, teach them to understand reasons why they should be great and achieve great feats. 

Furthermore, the contexts of parenting, cultural beliefs, situational demands, and the characteristics of each child are major factors that contribute to the way parents will discipline their children. Parents however need to be aware of this. They must also work towards merging all these factors to influence their children’s development and competence. 

Finally, be yourself as a parent. Yes, you have worries, demands, and the likes. But parenting is very fragile and you should know that your worries shouldn’t make you uninvolved in your children’s lives. Instead, it should spur you to want to give the best to them so that they can also be the best version of themselves.