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5 Ways to Stop Being a Controlling Parent
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While a younger child might need you to be more specific on what the rules are,
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5 Ways to Stop Being a Controlling Parent
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Hi, my name is Patricia O'Laughlin and I'm a Marriage and Family Therapist with TherapyForParents.com. I'm speaking to you today on behalf of About.com and giving you 5 ways to stop being a controlling parent.

Recognize Anxiety to Stop Being a Controlling Parent


The first thing is notice if you are having anxiety and fear. Recognize that these things are what leads somebody to being a controlling parent. Once you've identified them and once you feel like they're too much, you can take the steps to stop being a controlling parent.

Role Model Positive Behavior to Stop Being a Controlling Parent


The second thing is letting go and trusting in yourself. Role model the kinds of behaviors you want your children to do. Children often learn by watching. Trust yourself as a person and that the things that you do are good and that they are going to learn just from being around you.

Know Your Child to Stop Being a Controlling Parent


The third thing is know where your child is at developmentally. While a younger child might need you to be more specific on what the rules are, a teenager is going to find that controlling.



Engage in discussions with your teenager about what the rules are and why they think the rules are there. Participating in discussions with them will allow you to let them make some of their own decisions and for them to trust themselves.

Avoid Anger to Stop Being a Controlling Parent


The fourth thing is don't use your anger to motivate your child. Your child needs to learn how consequences will affect them negatively or how things can affect them positively. If they learn to do things to help you not be angry, they don't learn that doing things actually benefits them.

Try Parenting Groups to Stop Being a Controlling Parent


The fifth thing is if you notice that you're very anxious and fearful and you find yourself thinking about this a lot but not being able to try any of these new techniques, seek support. Parenting groups or a therapist can help you understand the root of your fears and anxieties. Sometimes they're not about our children at all.



Getting at the roots of these things can really help you feel more in the present and experience the full effects of parenting. Take deep breaths and relax. I know parenting is hard. It's easy to get in the position where we're controlling. Just be gentle on yourself and try something new.



Thank you so much for watching. For more information, visit us on the web at About.com.
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