Lawn-Mower Parents

The Newest Way Of Raising Kids

The man passed out as he exited the front door onto his porch. Someone dialed 911. When the paramedics arrived, they helped him regain consciousness and asked if he knew what caused him to faint. “It was enough to make anybody do so,” he said. “My son asked me for the keys to the garage and instead of driving the car out, he came out with the lawn mower.” Well, it’s parents and lawn-mowers I want to discuss.

Helicopter dads like to hover up above and tiger moms like to roar down below, but now make room for a whole new breed of mothers and fathers, lawn-mower parents: folks who go to great lengths to prevent their child(ren) from having to face any adversity at all – and they do so by removing all obstacles found in the way.  (They’re also called curling parents, who, like a broom sweeper in the sport, groom an area clear in anticipation of their child’s arrival to it).  Up north, instead of lawn-mower parents, the concept is called snow-plow parents.

Here are some examples:

Bye-Bye, Fido And Fluffy – Before the child is born, a new home is found for the dog or cat, so there’s zero chance the infant might be scratched or nicked.

Batten Down The Hatches – When the toddler’s walking, all that’s moveable is put away or glued down, so the little one will not have to hear a stern “No!”

Bigger Is Better – If a child is near the class cut-off date, making them the youngest, then they’re held back a year so they’ll be the biggest and smartest.

Everyone’s A Winner – Games are chosen and played with no score kept, so the emphasis is on fun; cooperation instead of having winners and losers.

Failure Is Not An Option – Young people are enrolled in educational school programs where there are: no grades, no failing and no hurry.

Surprisingly, a Canadian education psychologist took lawn-mower parenting to task; stating that such coddling will not help, but only harm a child’s long-term development.  Dr. Jillian Roberts told Global News Canada, “When fathers and mothers deprive their children of opportunities to practice problem-solving skills, their parenting is actually detrimental to the kids.  In fact, what they are really communicating is: “I don’t think you’re capable of handling this on your own.”

The bottom line?

Our job is not to prepare the road for the child.  Our job is to prepare the child for the road.

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