The roles that fathers have in our generation has had a significant facelift. We now see changing dynamics such as husbands staying at home, or fathers who are involved. These are massive changes that I am thrilled to be included in.
Although this is not to say that we have it all too easy, there are still some things that need our attention as fathers.
You’ve probably seen the 2003 Disney movie, Finding Nemo. This movie shows precisely what can happen to an overprotective father and his child. Sure, Marlin may be doing what’s in the best interest of Nemo but, sometimes some parents can get overboard with protecting their kids.
6 Ways You Can Affect Your Child As An Overprotective Dad
1. They get fearful easily.
Kids are going to find ways to do things that will hurt them. As a parent, it’s only natural for you to be cautious and to protect your child from harm. However, kids who are allowed to take risks can become more successful in the future. According to a TIME article, parents who let their kids take risks once in a while growing up to be more independent when they reach adulthood while those who have parents who protect them from everything will grow up to be fearful.
Children are natural risk-takers because they are curious, and they still lack proper discernment. As dads, it’s our job to protect our kids. We should allow them to take some calculated risk every once in a while. Additionally, taking risks may drive them to face failures which leads me to my next point.
2. They don’t develop resiliency.
Kids who don’t experience failures growing up will quickly feel defeat and have a hard time overcoming obstacles. Resiliency is the ability of a person to bounce back from failure no matter what.
As dads, we need to look at their failures as teachable moments. But these teachable opportunities won’t come if we prevent them from facing some difficulties on their own.
3. It teaches your child that they can’t decide for themselves.
I’ve seen parents who decide everything for their kids. From what clothes to wear, what food to eat, to who they should be friends with. An overprotective dad may ask his daughter to wear different clothes or ask his son to choose a different sport.
When you make a lot of decisions for your child, they lose confidence in themselves. It makes them think that they are not capable of making the right decisions.
4. Kids tend to be rebellious.
Rebellious kids usually turn the way they are because they grew up in an environment where they lack control. According to Mark Merril, the author of All Pro Dad—Seven Essentials to Be a Hero to Your Kids, we need to show our children that they will have more control over their decision-making to the extent that we can trust them to make wise decisions.
As we let our kids make more independent decisions, trust is developed in the relationships. When we have trust in a parent-child relationship, we’ll be more confident that our kids will make the right decisions even without us.
5. For boys, it teaches them the wrong idea about masculinity.
As a dad, we are our son’s first example of what a man should be. We have to teach our son about masculinity about what it is, and what is not.
When we show them that all we do is control or meddle with their decisions, we set an example of toxic masculinity. As they grow older and have a family of their own, they employ the same strategy because they feel that as a male figure, he has all the power to do so.
6. For girls, it gives them the wrong notion about men.
Just like with our sons, our daughters will develop a wrong idea about men. Girls who had controlling fathers look at men as somebody who’s controlling and restraining. This kind of attitude towards the opposite sex makes it difficult for them to maintain a relationship in the future. We are our daughter’s benchmark; let ’s make sure that he learns what is to be expected from other male figures in her life.