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Side Effects of Strict Parenting

Extremely strict parenting is a leading cause of rebelious and innapropriate behavior by children.


  1. “Where did you go last night?” my sister asked, “I went to a party and then stayed at Brooke’s house, it was so much fun! But shhh please don’t tell mom!” I know from experience and also from what I have observed elsewhere, even with some of my own friends—that strict parenting can cause a child to be deceitful, rebellious, insecure, and in the worst cases, turn to substance abuse to deal with their tribulations. Many parents think that the more rules they enforce upon their children the better off they will be, but this is not always the case. Although strict parenting is a good thing, it needs its boundaries.
  2. There are 4 types of parents; authoritarian, authoritative, permissive, and uninvolved parenting. Authoritarian parenting is a strict military style parenting where the parents have full control over the child and the child has no say so. One step below this is authoritative parenting, where the parents have authority over the child, but within reason. There are certain rules and expectations in place, but parents are more nurturing and uphold a closer relationship with the child. Below this is permissive parenting, where parents are more lenient on the child and have less rules. And lastly uninvolved parenting, this is when parents are very minimally involved in the child’s life; they lack any kind of rules or structure and allow the child to do as they please. Of these four types of parenting styles authoritative parenting is the best choice. It is the perfectbalance of structure and guidance, while still allowing the child to express themselves; and authoritative parenting allows for a better child parent relationship. Each type of parenting style has a different effect on the child; though strict parenting has its benefits, parents should sincerely consider leaning more towards authoritative parenting strategies, rather than authoritarian parenting.
  3. Numerous studies have shown the negative effects of overly strict parenting, one of the biggest issues with adolecents is rebelling against parental structure. There are many reasons for adolescents to rebel against the enforcement of strict parenting; For example, children that are forbidden to date are most likely going to date behind their parents back, leading them to be dishonest with their parents. If a teenager has an unreasonably early curfew, this may lead the teen to sneaking out, or lying to their parents about their whereabouts. Also, kids who are under extreme pressure to succeed academically or in sports may resort to substance abuse as a way to escape the pressure and anxiety inflicted upon them by their parents.
  4. The article below outlines the negative effects that overly strict parenting can have on a child. These are things such as behavioral problems, sexual activity and alcohol abuse. The article quotes, "Markham says the strict parent deprives children of the opportunity to learn self-discipline, because all control and decisions come from the parent." When a parent has full control over a child it doesn't give them any room to express themselves. "If punitive discipline is used, the teen is also more likely to be rebellious, angry or depressed, become overweight or become an excellent liar." As I mentioned previously, children are more likely to rebel against strict parenting because they are not given enough freedom, and this quote validates that statement. "Adolescents who were more closely monitored by their parents were about 30 percent less likely to be sexually active than teens whose parents were less watchful during the pre-adolescent period. Parental style can also affect teens’ decisions about drinking and the amount they consume, according to a December 2010 article on National Public Radio" (Greenwood). This quote directly relates to my overall idea that strict parenting does have these negative effects on a child. Studies have proved these things to be true, they have proved that overly strict parenting is the cause of children being dishonest, rebellious, and in the long run making negative decisions. Overall teenagers and children of all ages are going to make bad decisions, this comes with the trials and tribulations of life; but the way a parent raises their child plays a big role in decision making throughout the child's life.
  5. I know this from experience because as a teenager in high school I lived under my parent’s strict rules. I wasn't aloud to go to parties, I had to be home by 12, and my mother wouldn't let me hangout with people or boys that she did not know. My mother is pretty strict, very protective, and she worries a lot. Because of these strict rules I had to follow, I resorted to being dishonest on occasion so that I could go out and have fun. I didn't like being dishonest with my mother; I am lucky that I never got caught. But had she instilled her trust in me and let me go to parties and have a little bit more freedom, I would have never had to be dishonest with her. My Sister on the other hand she is much more rebellious. My sister is still under the same strict rules; her friends also have parents that have very similar rules. These girls all tell little lies to their parents about their whereabouts in order to have fun. Unfortunately for my sister she has been caught being dishonest and it has put a negative strain on her relationship with my mother.
  6. Children that are forbidden to date are most likely going to date behind their parents back, leading them to be dishonest with their parents. For example, a very close family friend of mine is a senior in high school, and his girlfriend is not aloud to date. Her father is very strict, but she is dating my family friend and has been for over a year now. It has been very hard on their relationship because she is forbidden to date, therefore she has to sneak around and lie to her parents about him. Not only is this just about how kids lie to their parents but it also correlates with another scary thought. If a child is lying to their parents about where they are and what they were doing, and something were to happen to that child, say they got in a car accident on a way to a party, or disappeared; their parents don’t actually know where there child is, and this is a scary thing to think about.
  7. Children who are under extreme pressure to exceed academically or in sports may result to substance abuse as a way to escape all of the pressure they are feeling from their parents. For example, in the TV series titled One Tree Hill one of the main characters, Nathan Scott was a star basketball player in high school and later moved on to playing professional basketball. His father was also the star basketball of his high school basketball team and moved on to play in college. As a child Nathans father pushed and prated him from the time he could pick up a ball, until he was lying in a hospital bed after collapsing in the middle of one of his games. Nathan felt so much pressure to succeed from his father; he felt he was never good enough and that he could never make his father happy, so he resorted to taking a performance-enhancing drug. It would amp him up and give him more stamina for his game, also more stamina in the weight room so he could train harder. One day he took too much and collapsed in the middle of his game and had to be rushed to the hospital. This goes to show that when parents are relentlessly pressuring their kids to be so successful, there is a chance that they will resort to drugs to either numb the pain, or to try and live up to the expectations of their parents.
  8. The image above is a Picture of Nathan and his father at one of his games; his father was at every game screaming at him from the sidelines. If Nathan wasn't performing to his fathers’ standards or had an off day, there was hell to pay. His father would talk him down and say horrible things to him. How is this supposed to help Nathans self-steam as he is in the middle of a game? Not only would his father do this during games but also he would harass him after every game telling him what he could do better. There are other ways to go about giving your child advice without taking it to far. His father is only making matters worse, inflicting more stress, anxiety, and pressure upon Nathan, and that becomes too much to handle after a while.
  9. Parents pushing their children too hard to exceed academically can in time cause a child to suffer from stress and anxiety, develope a low self image, become depressed, or turn to worse things such as substance abuse to deal with the pressure. Today kids are already under enough stress as it is with school alone. Schools expect a lot from students of today and are relentless with the amount of homework they assign. On top of this already stress, if a child has to deal with the extra stress of their parents always down their throats, it can become too much for the child, and in time negatively impact them.
  10. Not only will constant pressure from strict parents cause a child to lash out or resort to substance abuse, it can also highly affect a child’s self esteem. The following article explains the long-term effects of overly strict authoritarian parenting. It explains how authoritarian parenting can affect a child socially, mentally, and emotionally.
  11. I would like to stress the positive effects of Authoritative parenting. Although this type of parenting style is still strict, it has its limits. It is not as much of an aggressive approach as Authoritarian; it is the most effective and healthy way to parent a child. I grew up with strict parenting and the worst thing I did was lie about my whereabouts on occasion, not too bad. I personally never resorted to alcohol abuse or drug use, but that is not the case with all children that come from a strict parental household. I would not consider my parents to be authoritarian but more towards authoritative, I never struggled with extreme pressure to succeed from my parents; but I did deal with their strict rules. I am well mannered, respectful, and responsible, I know my boundaries, I am well rounded, I strive to be successful, and I am structured. These are the positive effects of strict parenting, and I praise my parents for enforcing strict rules upon me as much as I may not have liked it.
  12. The article below provides some examples of the positive outcomes of strict Authoritative parenting. It focuses on the better effect of a less dominant parenting structure than that of Authoritarian. I previously described the more positive effects of Authoritative parenting, this article is a perfect representation of reasons why parents should strive to practice this type of parenting.
  13. The article quotes "Because authoritative parenting establishes both strict guidelines and a nurturing attitude, students are shown to be more receptive to education and more likely to perform at or above the level of their peers." This goes to show that students with strict parents do better in school. Also, when mentioning sexual activity among adolescents the article quotes; "By setting firm limits and clear guidelines, authoritative parents encourage a high level of maturity and responsibility in their teens. Typical adolescents might lean on parents who have explained the rules for more moral decisions because they trust them. However, teens who have parents that are too strict will more likely go to their peers for moral and informational decisions." This article is advocating authoritative parenting rather than authoritarian parenting. The reason for this is to demonstrate that parents can be strict with their children, but within reason. Parents should know their limits, it is okay to be strict, but not too strict; there has to be a happy medium.
  14. In conclusion, Strict Authoritarian parenting though it has its few positive effects, can be very harmful to a child mentally, emotionally, and socially. It can cause children to lash out, become rebellious, break the rules, be violent, sneaky, and dishonest, feel insecure, resent their parents, and also turn to drugs and alcohol. Parents can be srtict and still succeed in parenting by using Authoritative parenting strategies, rather than Authoritarian parenting strategies. Though strict parenting can be a good thing, It needs its boundaries.

  15. Work Cited
  16. Greenwood, Beth. "The Effects of Having StrictParents on Teenagers." Global Post. Demand Media. Web. 26 Feb.2015.
  17. Walton, Stephen. "Authoritarian ParentingStyle." The Positive Parenting Centre. The Positive ParentingCentre, 1 Jan. 2012. Web. 26 Feb. 2015.
  18. Cuhna, Darlena. "The Positive Effects of Strict Ruleson Teens." Everyday Life. Demand Media. Web. 1 Mar. 2015.
  19. "Strict Authoritarian Parenting: Long TermPsychological Effects." Strict Authoritarian Parenting: Long TermPsychological Effects. Web.