We continued our discussion of "helicopter parents" today looking at parents involved in their child's career. WATCH VIDEO. It was intriguing to me because I am part of Gen Y and see a range of parenting in my group of friends alone. How much is too much in terms of parental involvement? I know I found the transition out of college to be more challenging and rewarding than the transition into college from high school. A lot of the challenge was facing decisions about "real life" outside of the college bubble. What is a 401k, what benefits package do I want, how do I negotiate a salary? It is a lot of responsibility compared to choosing which lab science can help fulfill a graduation requirement.
Michele Borba presented a guideline for parents of kids entering the workforce for the first time: "Never do for your child what your child can do for himself." It can definitely be frustrating when something happens in the workplace and I just want an easy answer, but it has been valuable to struggle through some of the questions I've had without the quick fix of my parents.
Al mentioned that he occasionally finds himself to be a helicopter parent, so I caught up with him to ask a few follow-up questions after the segment:
Q: You mentioned you sometimes meddle in your oldest daughter, Courtney's life - what specifically do you find yourself getting involved in?
Al: College mostly...anything related to college.
Q: How does she respond? Does she call you on it?
Al: She doesn't really react to it...she does her own thing.
Q: Do you catch yourself when you're doing it?
Al: You know, it's funny because I do it a lot less with Leila than I do with Courtney...my parents left me alone but smothered my younger brother...so I don't think it's an oldest child thing.
What do you think? Does it matter if it's your firstborn or the baby of the family? Do you catch yourself getting too involved or does your child ask you to back off? We want to hear your thoughts.