Worst Thing Parents Can Do To Kids, Parents may be setting their kids up for failure and issues like anxiety and depression. Are Parents Setting Kids Up for Failure by Pushing Too Hard for Success?, No matter your socioeconomic status, as parents you want your kids to have a better life than you do. But instead of launching a generation of happy young adults who feel driven to succeed, parents who are hyper-focused on doing everything “right” have created a country full of kids who are stressed-out, burned-out, and depressed. According to psychologist and author Madeline Levine, “Our current version of success is a failure.”
In her new book, “Teach Your Children Well: Parenting for Authentic Success,” Levine says that parents are preoccupied with “a narrow and shortsighted vision of success,” and that we rely on our kids to “provide status and meaning in our own lives.” It’s a harmful combination, weighing kids down with serious issues — “stress, exhaustion, depression, anxiety, poor coping skills, and unhealthy reliance on others for support and direction, and a weak sense of self,” Levine says — when we should be trying to teach them to be resilient and independent if we really want them to succeed in life.
When people are too caught up in finding the “right” way to parent, they can end up being physically present — perhaps too much so — but emotionally disengaged. “While you think you’re giving your kids everything, they often think you are bored, pushy, and completely oblivious to their real needs,” Levine writes.
A child’s ability to succeed in life doesn’t necessarily correlate to a parent’s well-intentioned efforts anyway, says Bryan Caplan, a father of three and the author of “Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids: Why Being a Great Parent is Less Work and More Fun Than You Think.”
“Today’s typical parents strive to mentally stimulate their children and struggle to protect their brains from being turned to mush by television and video games” pushing them instead to strive for academic success, he told Yahoo! Shine. “Yet by adulthood, the fruit of parents’ labor is practical invisible. Children who grew up in enriched homes are no smarter than they would have been if they’d grown up in average homes.”