Indulgent/Permissive Parent Position
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
When Terrie moved to town and joined her local parenting group, she was surprised to find so many people sharing stories of difficulties with their child’s behavior. Many of these comments came with groans of dismay and shared stories of restaurant debacles and lost TV privileges. After a few gatherings, Terrie admitted that she never had to set limits for Elizabeth, who was eight years old, and time outs were exceedingly rare. “I guess she’s just an easy kid,” Terrie said with a shrug.     Although many of the others left that meeting that day green with envy, after they got to kno ..read more
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The Foundation of the Five Parenting “Positions”
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
Parenting 101: The Foundation of the Five Parenting “Positions”      No one goes into parenthood thinking, “I’d really like to raise a narcissist.” Unfortunately, narcissism in children is on the rise, and so are parenting styles that support narcissism.  Since we are bombarded every day with conflicting advice about how to raise a child, it’s no wonder people sometimes pick a parenting path that goes awry.  In this six-part series on parenting and narcissism, we’ll examine the five parenting “positions” and how they affect children. But before we can dig into the det ..read more
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The Parenting Position that Avoids Narcissism and Grows Healthy Children
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
The Healthy Center: Parenting from the “Middle Ground” Through 1) Attitudes and Emotions and 2) Limit-Setting and Involvement      In my six-part blog series, we’ve looked at a lot of the ways well-meaning parents can go wrong. But how do you do it right? Do you have to read every parenting book? Spend twenty-four hours a day with your child? Co-sleep? Not co-sleep? What’s the secret!? In my new book, Childhood Narcissism: Strategies to Raise Unselfish, Unentitled, and Empathetic Children, I identify the middle ground as the key concept. Moderation has long been celebrated by p ..read more
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Inattentive/Disengaged Parent Position
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Leslie Lutz
2M ago
Doug is the CEO of a tech startup, on call 24-7. Even at the dinner table, he’s answering texts from his subordinates. His two young elementary age children, Josh and Sarah, have noticed he’s never really “there,” but their mother, Jane, instructs them that they must not bother him, since he is a very important person, then reminds the nanny to keep the children in line. This is usually said as she’s rushing out the door to her various volunteer positions—at the church, at the Junior League, and at whatever gala event can rope her into a leadership position. In fact, both parents seem to find ..read more
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Are You a Helicopter Parent?
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
  Overparenting can keep your child from experiencing age-appropriate struggle. Daigu-Ellaby / Unspash   Take the quiz to find out! Over-parenting, also known as being a helicopter parent, is detrimental for children. Educators and psychologists have used a variety of images to describe this parenting practice including the helicopter parent, hovering parent, snowplow parent, all of which underscore the excessive closeness, protection, and/or control of this sort of parenting.  More academic types describe such behavior as intrusive, controlling, or directive. Regardless of its ..read more
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Hovering/Directive Parent Position - High Expectations + Seen as Special/Special Treatment
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
You’ve seen them. The mom who emails her child’s teacher every week with a thousand questions. The dad who ties the shoes of his eight-year-old. The parents who intervene on the playground to “help” their child with an ordinary disagreement with another child. They are the helicopter parents. So why is this damaging? After all, they aren’t yelling insults or ignoring their kid, so is it really so bad?       Hovering/Directive Parent Position (High Expectations + Seen as Special/Special Treatment)   Most hovering/directive parents have an inflated or grandiose view of the c ..read more
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The Sizes and Shapes of Narcissism
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
    Narcissists come in all sizes and shapes—or so it seems. The confusion can be seen in this common water cooler conversation: “If George is a narcissist, then Hannah can't be. They’re nothing alike.” George and Hannah may “look” different, but they possess the same psychological structures. Believe it or not, but if narcissists, the more nerdy, perfectionistic valedictorian has the same psychological structure as the popular football captain who can be controlling, manipulative, and prone to bullying others. So how do you actually spot a narcissist? This list isn’t exhaustive, bu ..read more
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Critical/Harsh Parent Position - Strict Rules/Harsh Discipline + Criticism/Seen as Unworthy
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
In the next installment of our six-part series on Parenting Positions, we’re tackling the critical/harsh parent position. This type of parent has been providing Hollywood with wounded characters for over a hundred years. Who would Iron Man be without his demanding father backstory? Who would Lisel be if she didn’t have to sneak around behind Captain Von Trapp’s back to experience her first crush? What would have happened to Neil Perry’s character in Dead Poet’s Society if his father had listened for once? Unfortunately, in real life, you can’t leave the consequences of this sort of parenting a ..read more
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Helping Preschoolers Learn to Take Responsibility
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
    Long before children begin formal schooling, they embark on the process of becoming unique, independent, and responsible little people. They continue this development throughout their educational years and into adulthood. Although most adults do not realize it, this activity can and should begin at an early age.  It will then provide an important base upon which the educational process can build. Schools require that children know how to be independent workers. Imagine the shock of a preschooler who has become accustomed to his mother doing everything for him, when he arr ..read more
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Seven Books Every Parent Should Read and Why
Dr. Mary Ann Little Blog
by Mary Ann Little
2M ago
Every bookstore has a whole section dedicated to parenting books. Why? Child development is on every parent’s mind. It’s also more complicated than a lot of people realize. A child's growth and development necessarily keep parents on their toes, often struggling to answer a child's difficult question (Why doesn’t my friend like me anymore?) or to understand newfound competencies (I can cook by myself now, so stop helping me!), or upsetting behavior (You’re a doodoo head, mommy). Parents want guidance and reassurance that they and their child are on track. How does a parent know what resource t ..read more
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