Parental attitudes are a very important criterion for the development of the child from birth.

Parents raise their children in line with customs and traditions that are considered correct according to the rules of society. From birth, the child struggles to adapt to the natural and social environment around him/her and receives the greatest support from his/her parents in this endeavor. The child learns from his/her family how to express himself/herself and become a self-governing individual. The child takes the parents as a "model". They learn their behavior and way of life through imitation.

Attitude in generalAttitude can be defined as a reaction or tendency that an individual develops against an object or situation based on experience, motive and knowledge. Attitudes are formed by being influenced by experiences and experiences and have a directive effect on an individual's behavior. The family environment from birth, the individual's education and the way he/she perceives his/her parents or other people outside the family are effective in developing positive or negative attitudes.

The two most prominent characteristics of parental attitudes "emotional" relationship dimension and "control" dimension. The dimension of parents' emotional relationship with children ranges from child-centered, accepting attitudes to rejecting attitudes, and includes healthy attitudes, behaviors and rules in child education. The "control dimension" ranges from restrictive to tolerant and indifferent attitudes. The dimension of control is essential for people to live happily together and to establish good relationships.

Although the attitudes of parents towards their children have been grouped in different ways by experts, the generally accepted democratic attitude, authoritarian attitude, free (disinterested) attitude, overly tolerant attitude, protective attitude and inconsistent attitudeare classified as

Democratic Parental Attitude 

An adult needs to respect the child. One form of respect for the child is to take the child seriously, to give the child a sense of trust. Democratic attitudeThe love offered to the child in the family is unconditional, the child is given a voice and his/her decisions are respected; there is an atmosphere of friendship in the home. There is a balanced pattern of behavior among family members who share a democratic environment; there are mutual rights and responsibilities and rules to be followed. A democratic attitude, in which behaviors are measured and consistent, is an approach that allows for the balanced development of the child's personality. Children are encouraged to gain experience, grow autonomously and rules can be flexible when necessary.

It is observed that children raised in a democratic family environment are more secure, socially competent, respectful to themselves and others around them, and successful at school.

Authoritarian Parental Attitude 

In an authoritarian environment where punishment is prioritized, where there is strict discipline and pressure, where strict compliance with the rules is expected, the rights of the child are minimized. There is no flexibility in following the rules. The child is afraid of doing wrong and being punished. In such an environment, the child is expected to fulfill what is asked of him/her without discussion and is given love if he/she behaves in the desired way. Decisions about the child are made by the parents and the child is guided by his/her parents in matters that concern him/her. In such a situation, anti-social behaviors and failures in peer relations may be observed in the child.

Children who grow up in an authoritarian parental environment need to be able to cope with authority.submits to authority and does not deviate from the desired behavior. Children who grow up with authoritarian attitudes are more likely to be individuals who cannot make their own decisions and are dependent on others, exhibit maladaptive behaviors, have communication problems, cannot compete and are sensitive.

Free (Disinterested) Parental Attitude 

Parenthood is a very difficult task. The biggest problem is when parents underestimate the responsibility of raising a child: parents who do not care about the child, are indifferent, ignore the child's social and emotional needs, and show little affection, causes the child to exhibit negative behaviors. In a laissez-faire attitude, where parents often give the child unlimited rights, the child sees rules as unnecessary. Relationships are child-centered and parents become fearful of their child.

Children who grow up with a laissez-faire attitude are deprived of parental guidance, may behave selfishly and thoughtlessly, and may exhibit aggressive behaviors because their behaviors are not restricted. On the other hand, they can be active and creative individuals in social relations.

Overly Tolerant Parental Attitude

Children who grow up with an overly tolerant attitude may fail in social relations. They have difficulty distinguishing between right and wrong and obeying rules, Anti-social They have a tendency to show one behavior; they are not willing to share and cooperate. When they start school, they may become frustrated with the rules and experience problems of maladjustment. These children, who are used to always taking, may become adults who try to grant themselves various social rights and superiorities that they do not deserve. Such children show very poor social adjustment both inside and outside the home.

In an overly tolerant and indulgent family attitude towards their children, the child is a person who acts on his/her own and is confident that his/her family will meet all his/her needs. An overly tolerant and lax attitude is one in which supervision is very low and tolerance is high. All behaviors of children, including sexual and aggressive impulses and behaviors, are tolerated or ignored. The child's personal preferences are not interfered with, and there is no specific attitude towards sleeping, eating or working. Children are not demanded to behave in an age-appropriate, developmentally appropriate and mature manner; social rules and values are not given much importance and are not taught to children.

When a child does not follow the rules, there is usually no sanction from the parents.

In over-indulgent and lax family attitudes, parents accept the child's every wish without supervision or restriction. In such families, the child is given countless rights and his/her behavior is not restricted. Even if punishment is given in some cases, it is inadequate and not taken seriously by the child. The child takes the initiative and family members unconditionally accept and fulfill his/her wishes. There is no healthy communication between the child and the parents, the child grows up in an environment of exaggerated love and is overly spoiled.

Protective Parental Attitude 

In the "foster family" type, parents (a) take an excessive interest in their children and want to do everything for them. (b) combine their love for their children with excessive supervision and do not allow them to have individual and independent lives. (c) want their children to depend on them and to ask and consult them about everything.

The "protectiveness" of the family means that the parents overprotect the child, supervise and care for the child more than necessary. The protective attitude, which is more often manifested in the mother-child relationship, can also be caused by the mother's own emotional loneliness. A mother with a protective attitude integrates with her child and protects him/her against all kinds of external influences. Even when the child reaches a maturity where he/she can meet his/her own needs, the mother meets all the needs of the child as if he/she were a small child. She feeds him, dresses him, does his homework and puts him to bed. The mother believes that by such behavior she is expressing her love for her child and helping him/her. In reality, however, the mother is compensating for her own loneliness and unhappiness.

Unstable and Inconsistent Parental Attitude 

Unbalanced and inconsistent family attitudes may result from differences of opinion between parents on various issues related to child development and education, or from the varying attitudes of individual parents. One parent may adopt a tolerant and democratic attitude, while the other may adopt an oppressive attitude. In such a situation, as a result of the difference in attitudes of the spouses, a certain behavior of the child may be punished by one of the parents, while it may be considered as normal behavior by the other, or even rewarded.

Another point is that, individually, a contradictory mother or father can be rewarding one day and punitive another day for the same kind of behavior shown by the child. The parent's a consistent and balanced attitude This leads to the child and young person floundering and being ambivalent in their behavior; the child does not learn clearly what the "right behavior" is.

Author: Expert Psychologist Candan TURHAN