Many parents believe that they are only guiding and helping their child when, in fact, they are causing harm instead. Comparing children to their siblings or other children makes them begin to doubt themselves.
Parents often believe that if they extol the positive characteristics of siblings and other children to their so-called errant child, their own child will improve. Oftentimes, children who are constantly compared to others have a diminished sense of individuality and ultimately come to believe that they are worthless.
Also, many parents are threatened if their children’s abilities and characteristics are different from their own. These are firm believers that their offspring should be carbon copies of themselves with similar characteristics, interests, and goals. They feel that if their children are just like them, everything will be harmonious and stress-free.
Parents who criticize their different children’s innate abilities and characteristics are often invalidating their children’s innermost psychological core.
Making mistakes is an integral part of a child’s learning and growth process. However, there are parents who equate mistakes with grave mortal sins.
Continuous harping on mistakes to a child is tantamount to abuse. This child begins to lose what sense of initiative and risk-taking that he or she has and thus becomes extremely anxious and risk-aversive, often not electing to attempt anything lest he or she errs. They will always choose the path of the least resistance all through life.
A child’s school grade is not always an accurate reflection of his or her innate intellectual capacity. To pigeonhole anyone’s intellectual ability based entirely upon his or her grade point average often creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. If the child believes that he or she is stupid because he or she is a C student, they might become a low achiever throughout life, no matter what his or her human potential is.
There are parents who do not believe in praising their children because they believe that it spoils kids and makes them conceited. These parents maintain that they should never have to praise their kids for things such as having good behaviour, doing chores without being asked and earning good grades.
Children need praise in order to assess the positivity of their performance and to continue with such behaviour. If they do not receive praise, oftentimes they will not achieve what they might have.
To some parents, their word is law. They do not view their kids as thinking and independent individuals in their own right, but as pieces of property that they can programme at will. They want them to obey and nothing else. They want kids who they can easily control and are highly threatened by those who exhibit a more independent nature.
Anyone raised by authoritarians like this becomes timid and submissive. They also become passive, believing that they do not count. They feel powerless and that others are more powerful than they are.