4 Types of Parenting Styles | Definition and Effect

parenting styles definition
parenting styles

Do you know that one’s parenting style type can go a long way in affecting and determining who the person turns out to be? With little knowledge about parenting styles definition, charts and parenting styles psychology, I am 100% sure you will get a clear picture of why your kids are the way they are.

Parenting is a complex and ever-evolving journey that shapes the lives of both parents and children. With countless books, blogs, and well-meaning advice from friends and family, navigating the sea of information on how best to raise our children can be challenging. One helpful framework that has emerged in psychology is the concept of parents style.

In this article, we will explore four distinct parenting styles – authoritative, authoritarian, permissive, and neglectful – their definitions and their effects on child development.

By understanding these different approaches to parenting, we can gain valuable insight into our behaviours and make informed choices that will shape our children’s futures.

Parenting Styles Definition

According to Wikipedia, A parenting style is a psychological construct representing standard strategies parents use in their child-rearing. The quality of parenting can be more essential than the quantity of time spent with the child.

For instance, a parent can spend an entire afternoon with their child. Yet, the parent may be engaging in a different activity and not demonstrating enough interest towards the child.

However, Parenting styles have to do with how parents respond and interact with their children. Note, Parenting practices are specific behaviours, while parenting styles represent broader patterns of parenting practices. 

In a nutshell, Parenting style is shaped by the parent’s developmental history, education, and personality; the child’s behaviour; and the immediate and broader context of the parent’s life.

Also, the parent’s behaviour is influenced by the parent’s work, marriage, family finances, and other conditions likely to affect the parent’s behaviour and psychological well-being.

In addition, parents in different cultures, from different social classes, and from different ethnic groups rear their children differently. In any event, children’s behaviour and psychological development are linked to the parenting style with which they are raised.

Baumrind Theory | Parenting Styles Theory

There are various theories and opinions on the best ways to rear children and differing levels of time and effort that parents are willing to invest.

In the 1960s, Baumrind noticed that preschoolers exhibited distinctly different types of behaviour.

Each type of behaviour was highly correlated to a specific kind of parenting. Baumrind’s theory is that there is a close relationship between parenting styles and children’s behaviour, which leads to different outcomes in the children’s lives.

Based on extensive observation, interviews and analyses, Baumrind initially identified three parenting styles: authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive.

Maccoby and Martin (1983) expanded this parenting style model using a two-dimensional framework.

They made a further distinction by expanding Baumrind’s permissive parenting into two different types: permissive parenting (also known as indulgent parenting) and neglectful parenting (also known as uninvolved parenting).

These four parenting styles are sometimes called Baumrind parenting styles or Maccoby and Martin parenting styles.

Note, A child’s parenting style affects the child emotionally, physically and mentally.

Read Also: 11 Ways Parent-Child relationships can be Strengthen

Parenting Style Types

There are four Parenting styles, and it includes has four main styles:

  • Authoritarian
  • Authoritative
  • Permissive
  • Detached

I agree with you that because of many responsibilities that weigh a parent down; they may not consistently maintain a particular parenting style. Some parents follow some general tendencies in their approach to childrearing.

However, you will be right if you describe a parent-child relationship with the prevailing parenting style.

These descriptions provide guidelines for professionals and parents interested in understanding how variations in the parent-child relationship affect the child’s development.

Authoritarian parents

When we talk about Authoritarian parents, we mean parents that are difficult and rigid in their decisions and rules.

These parents prove to be strict, and they expect absolute obedience from their children without any questioning.

Their children or child are expected to accept the family beliefs and principles without questioning or trying to take their own decision.

Authoritarian parents are strict disciplinarians, often relying on physical punishment and the withdrawal of affection to shape their child’s behaviour.

Effect of this Parenting Style: This parenting style affects the child negatively. He tends to grow up being moody, unhappy, fearful, and irritable often.

Also, they tend to be shy, withdrawn, and lack self-confidence. If affection is withheld, the child is commonly rebellious and antisocial.

Read Also: 10 Effective Parenting Tips for Teenage Daughters

Authoritative parents

The second parenting style on our list is Authoritative parenting. These parents tend to respect the opinions of each of their children by allowing them to be different.

Similarly, they will nurture and forgive when children make mistakes or engage in disappointing behaviour. This makes for close, healthy relationships.

Although there are rules in the household, they allow their child to decide whether to accept the family’s beliefs and rules without imposing them.

However, parents are both responsive and demanding; they are firm, but they discipline with love and affection rather than power, and they are likely to explain rules and expectations to their children instead of simply asserting them.

Parents who practice this style tend to be warm when their child approaches. They treat their children with respect when children ask questions when they talk together. 

Effect of this Parenting Style: Children that grow up under such parents tends to develop self-esteem. They are independent, inquisitive, happy, assertive, and always interactive.

You can also check out our article on Relationship Ties Building if you want to build a healthy relationship with people.

Permissive parents

Talking about Permissive parents, they tend to lack absolute control over their child’s behaviour. These parents are always unstable and inconsistent in maintaining the rules existing in the home.

As a result of that, the children decide whether they will follow the rule and to what extent. They learn that they can get away with any behaviour. Indulgent parents are responsive but not incredibly demanding.

They have few expectations of their children and impose little or inconsistent discipline. There are empty threats of punishment without setting limits. Role reversal occurs; the children act more like the parents, and the parents behave like the children.

Effect of this Parent Style: Children of permissive parents may be disrespectful, disobedient, aggressive, irresponsible, and defiant. They are insecure because they lack guidelines to direct their behaviour. However, these children are frequently creative and spontaneous.

Although low in both social responsibility and independence, they are usually more cheerful than the conflicted and irritable children of authoritarian parents.

Disengaged parents

Finally, disengaged (detached) or Uninvolved parents. In this parent styling, the parents are disconnected and very hands-off.

Although they try to provide their children with basic needs, including food, clothing, shelter, and health, they must be more responsive and demanding.

However, they may be careless or unaware of the child’s need for affection and discipline. Children with detached parents have more psychological difficulties and behavioural problems than other youngsters.

This parenting style creates an unhealthy relationship because the parent is not close to the children. They believe their children can train themselves once their basic needs are available.

Now the question boils down to……

Why is it that authoritative parenting provides such advantages over other styles?

Because authoritative parents are more likely to be viewed as reasonable, fair, and just so their children are more likely to comply with the requests that these parents make. Also, because these parents provide rules and explanations for these rules, children are much more likely to internalize these lessons.

Rather than simply following the rules because they fear punishment (as they might with authoritarian parents), the children of authoritative parents can see why the rules exist, understand that they are fair and acceptable, and strive to follow these rules to meet their own internalised sense of what is right and wrong.

Of course, the parenting styles of individual parents also combine to create a unique blend in each family. For example, the mother may display an authoritative style, while the father favors a more permissive approach.

This can sometimes lead to mixed signals or situations where a child seeks approval from the more permissive parent to get what they want. To create a cohesive approach to parenting, parents must learn to cooperate as they combine various elements of their unique parenting styles.

Read Also: Do Cheaters Miss Their Ex-Partners? How to Know

Parenting styles FAQs

What are the four parenting styles?

These parenting styles fall into a generally accepted four broad categories. Though different researchers give different names to them, the styles usually are said to be: Authoritarian, Authoritative, Permissive, and Uninvolved. Authoritarian parents are rigorous and controlling.

What is active parenting?

Active parenting involves helping your children to learn survival and life skills. Although many skills are involved in raising a family, several factors, in particular, are critical: courage, self-esteem, responsibility, and cooperation.

What is peaceful parenting?

Peaceful parenting is about taking control of ourselves, raising ourselves, and giving ourselves a timeout when necessary – rather than controlling and manipulating our children. And that’s hard.

What is permissive parenting?

Permissive parenting is a parenting style characterised by low demands and high responsiveness. Permissive parents tend to be very loving yet provide few guidelines and rules. These parents do not expect mature behaviour from their children and often seem more like a friend than parental figures.

In conclusion

Understanding the different parenting styles and their effects is crucial for parents and educators. Authoritarian parenting may lead to obedient children but can also result in low self-esteem and a lack of independence.

Authoritative parenting promotes healthy communication and independence but requires balance and consistency. Permissive parenting allows for freedom and creativity but may result in entitlement and lack of discipline.

Uninvolved parenting can severely impact a child’s development, leading to behavioural problems and emotional issues. By recognizing these various styles, parents can make informed decisions about raising their children, ultimately shaping their future success and well-being.


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