Parenting Doesn't Stop at Eighteen

Parenting Doesn't Stop at Eighteen Parenting Doesn't Stop at Eighteen

The finishing line is not 18! It can be difficult when your kids become adults. There are new challenges, new responsibilities and the stakes are higher. Guess what? You're still a parent! There are fantastic ways to help your young adult navigate this new stage of life.

Distancing too much.

Touch base with your child. They might feel resentful or lonely and you might not even know it. Think of yourself at 18, did you have everything figured out? It could be a scary time. Going out into the world and leaving your parents’ home could mean finding a new social circle to depend on. They will be learning to be alone and to cope with new challenges. It is important for your young adult to have a support network. Having a parents' love and wisdom to fall back on could make all the difference. Maybe meet up for lunch or reach out with a phone call. Present an opportunity for your child to voice their feelings. Gift your child with a true friendship.


Helicopter parenting or relentless parenting is when a parent feels the need to manage every aspect of their child's life. Research shows that overbearing parenting leads to a lower quality of psychological well-being and less satisfaction from family interactions in college aged kids. Overbearing parenting styles are on the rise. More than half of college age children are being financially supported by their parents at some level. Parents are making doctor’s appointments for their adult children, reminding them of deadlines, making payments for them and much more. If your child is healthy, things should change. They will be enjoying their independence. Parenting at this level should involve fostering their ability and confidence in making independent choices.

If you are trying to avoid being an overbearing parent, try to ask yourself these three questions before interfering in an aspect of your child's life.

Why are you helping your child with a task?
Are they capable of doing it for themselves? (If so, teach them.)
What would happen if you didn’t do this for them?

Finding a balance

Unconditional love from a parent is always needed. That need does not change when adulthood comes around the corner. It can be so hard not to be the parent that rescues the day. It can also be hard to know how and when to close distance. It is essential to adapt parenting methods as your child becomes a young adult. Give your child more responsibility. Use the questions mentioned earlier and let them take control of their lives.

Hold back on unsolicited advice.

There is no need to be involved in every action your child makes. Giving unsolicited advice can only make them feel like they don't have control. That can foster resentment. Treat your child with respect. If you respect them, they will be more willing and able to respect themselves. Love unconditionally. You taught them as much as you could for most of their life. Now they need your unconditional love and support first and foremost. Check in. Share your interests with your child. Seek their opinion and companionship. Parents never stop being role models. Being there keeps you in their support network. Remember, a child needs their parents love, interest, approval, and attention!

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