Move Over Helicopter Parents, Meet 'Slacker Parents'
byKaitlin StanfordSep 18, 2013
Think Attachment Parenting's too nutty? Helicopter Parenting not your style, either? Fear not, parents of the world: there's a new trend in town. Say hello to "Slacker Parenting."
We know, it doesn't exactly sound that awesome. In fact, it sounds pretty bad. But don't dismiss it just yet. "Slacker Parenting," as it's being dubbed, isn't when mom and dad just sit on the couch eating Cheetos in their PJs while watching TV marathons. (Though that does sound like a dream, doesn't it?) According to mommy blogger Alli Worthington, who wrote about "The Case for Slacker Parenting" over at Babble earlier this month, it's simply just a more hands-off approach to guiding your kids through the day.
So what does that mean, exactly? What if instead of hovering over your kids at night, making sure every last math problem is correct and every book report is finished ... you simply didn't? What if your morning routine of running around making sure the kids are dressed and all their lunches are packed no longer was your problem? And you just let them pick out their clothes and, get this, pack their own lunches? Of course, you may have to step in and draw the line somewhere (otherwise they'd probably walk off with their pants on backwards and Cap'n Crunch sandwiches for lunch), but, for the most part, think of all the extra time you'd have. You could take a whole 10-minute-long shower! The possibilities are endless!
Worthington spoke with Good Morning America this week about her whole approach, and didn't apologize for one bit of it: "I never help my children with homework," she admitted. "I'm available if they have questions, but I'm not going to spend all evening going 'Did you check this and did you check this?'" And she's probably better off for it. After all, Worthington has five sons. That would be some pretty grueling homework duty every night.
But as with most parenting trends, we wonder, is this all good for the kids? GMA put that question to relationship and parenting expert Karyn Gordon, who said: "When [Worthington] compares herself to the rest of the culture, she sees herself as a slacking parent, but I don't... I actually see that as a much healthier parenting style who is choosing very strategically, very carefully with what she's actually going to be involved in."
Do you already use some of these approaches with your kids?