970 McHenry Avenue, Crystal Lake, IL 60014
Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC

Call Today for Your FREE Consultation

Call Us800-338-3833 | 815-338-3838

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Problems with Smothering Children as Single Parent

Posted on in Family Law

Problems with Smothering Children as Single ParentChildren of divorced or separated parents need their parents to be a supportive presence in their lives, However, single parents can actually harm their children by overparenting. With the absence of a marriage or romantic relationship, a single parent’s children may become the sole focus of his or her life. The parent may also feel guilty about putting the children through the divorce, causing him or her to overcompensate. There are several forms of overparenting that can negatively affect both the children’s and the parent’s personal development:

  1. Overprotection: Single parents can take an overly cautious approach towards their children’s safety. They are adverse to even small risks, preferring to shelter their children and tackle the problems themselves. Parents must allow their children to face some challenges on their own. It allows the children to develop problem-solving skills and emotional resiliency.
  2. Spoiling: Single parents are often driven by a need for their children’s love and admiration. Giving children everything they want is a quick and easy way to win their affection, but it creates a sense of entitlement. The parent is training his or her children to expect others to acquiesce to their wishes. The children will experience a rude awakening if they bring this attitude to their own romantic relationships or jobs.
  3. Overbearing: Single parents can put excessive pressure on their children by becoming too involved in their lives. Parents may want to control every decision their children make because the parents have expectations for the type of people they will become. When the children do not meet those expectations, the parents can react by being overly critical. As a result, the children feel pressure to please their parents and lack confidence in their own decisions.
  4. Attachment: Children eventually become adults who must leave their parent’s home. Overparenting can create a co-dependency that makes that separation more difficult. The child feels unprepared to live alone without his or her parent’s protection and guidance. The parent is also uncertain about what to do without his or her daily parental responsibilities. Both parent and child need the freedom to create their own identities in preparation for their separation.

Single Parenting Style

Being a good single parent means being involved in your children’s lives while also preparing them to become healthy adults. Parents must selectively allow their children to make their own decisions and take risks. Unfortunately, some family law courts mistake overparenting with quality parenting when determining the allocation of parental responsibilities. A McHenry County family law attorney at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, can help you explain how a balanced parenting style is in the best interest of your children. Schedule a free consultation by calling 815-338-3838.



Illinois State Bar Association State Bar of Wisconsin Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce Illinois Trial Lawyers Association McHenry County Bar Association
Back to Top