What type of parenting style do you have? As a parent, you likely fit into one of the many parenting styles that have been created, some of which have been debated amongst parents for a long time.

Authoritative parenting

Authoritative parenting is when parents encourage children to be independent but still place limits on their actions, and will set standards for their behaviour. Parents understand how their children are feeling and teach them how to regulate their feelings, helping them to find appropriate outlets to solve problems. They also expect mature, independent, and age-appropriate behaviour, and will punish for misbehaviour, not arbitrary or violent.

Authoritarian parenting

Authoritarian parenting is demanding without direction, explanation or feedback on the child’s behaviour. Corporal punishment, such as spanking, and shouting are forms of discipline frequently preferred by authoritarian parents. The goal of this style of parenting is to teach the child to behave, and ultimately be prepared to survive and thrive in the real world.

Indulgent parenting

Indulgent parenting, also called permissive, non-directive, lenient or libertarian, is a style of parenting in which parents are very involved with their children but place few demands or controls on them. Parents are nurturing and accepting, and are responsive to the child’s needs and wishes, acting more as a “friend” than a disciplinarian. The expectations of the child are very low, and there is little discipline. Permissive parents also allow children to make their own decisions, giving them advice as a friend would. This type of parenting is very lax, with few punishments or rules.

Freestyle parenting – off grid parenting

There is also another newer style of parenting, even more, lenient than lenient/indulgent parenting perhaps, which is known as free-range, freestyle parenting or “off-grid” parenting. This is a laissez-faire style of parenting and includes ditching traditional concepts like bedtimes, modern medicine, potty-training and even school.

When it comes to education, these parents’ off-grid method involved not even homeschooling, but unschooling, a somewhat newer term in which kids learn things they want to learn and at their own pace. Parents teach these children what they believe is important, opting out of the more traditional curriculum practised in the school system and even homeschooling. Instead of engaging with other children in classrooms, their “freestyle” education has these children choosing their own learning subjects, even if that means painting or playing outside.

The parenting method that lets kids make the decisions all on their own, without any rules or regulations, or input or guidance from their parents. This mother of three Vickie, from Hull, U.K. practices ‘unschooling’ with her children, according to the BBC. She has taken her children out of the school system and allowed them to decide what to learn on their own schedule. Even more, the kids decide what and when to eat, and when to go to bed.

Watch the video to learn more:

What do you think about this style of parenting?



Maria Lianos-Carbone is the author of “Oh Baby! A Mom’s Self-Care Survival Guide for the First Year”, and publisher of amotherworld.com, a leading lifestyle blog for women.

1 Comment

  1. I’m not sure why I can’t view the video, but just wanted to comment and say that we started unschooling our kids (10 and 11-year-old) about 5 months ago and it has been the most liberating and surprising time of our lives. Our children are happier than they’ve ever been and I’M even happier than I’ve ever been—and I’m with them 24/7 LOL The stress of school took its toll on the entire family. We are now low-stress and open to adventures of exploration and play. We aren’t quite “free-range” parents (we eat 3ish meals a day and try to keep to regular sleep schedules, but if they are reading or playing, I almost never tell them to go to bed! so maybe we’re a bit more free-range than traditional parents?)

    I walked away from my newborn/family photography business to focus on the kids full-time and I have zero regrets!! We will never get this time back with our children–my business can wait!

    Anyways, you can follow along on our adventure on our website: gettingunschooled.com


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