Parenting styles differ from each and every parent. Some use the styles they themselves experienced growing up while others use information they obtain from reading books or talking to friends. Popular magazines like "Parenthood" and "Parents" offer insight to the best and most effective styles of parenting. The findings and methods in these magazines and books aren't necessarily valid.
Even though each parent acquires his or her own unique parenting method, three major styles have been defined by observations, made by Diana Baumrind, of Caucasian middle-class families. The three parenting styles include authoritarian, permissive, and authoritative. This article also helps define the general outcome of development for each style.
Authoritarian parents show the least amount of affection towards their children. These parents typically have strict rules. They tell their children exactly what they want them to do and don't typically give any other choices. From my personal experience, I would consider these to be the parents of my friends who were constantly grounded. If they were told they needed to clean their room and it wasn't done in the fashion the parent expected, the child was punished in the form of "grounding" which had a different meaning among different parents. Authoritarian parents may give the dreaded "because I said so response" when a child asks why they have to do something. Because this style often doesn't allow children to think for themselves, it has been suggested that authoritarian parenting may delay a child's development of critical thinking skills and emotional interaction skills. Both of these contribute to success in the modern world
Permissive parents allow the children to be more in control. They are more lenient and give children more freedom. These types of parents tend to take on a more loving and caring parenting style and do not rely nearly as heavily on punishment as authoritarian parents. Children are given many more choices even if they are unable to make what are considered to be good choices. The "winner" in this style of parenting is the child; they are given whatever they want. A lack of responsibility and relationship problems may be a developmental result of permissive parenting
The authoritative approach finds a happy medium between permissive and authoritarian styles. They show the love and warmth of a permissive parent but also set clear limits and boundaries as in the authoritarian styles. This "best of both worlds" style is considered to be the most effective in child development. Children with authoritative parents are given a limit of choices and learn the positive and negative consequences of their decisions and choices. Of the three styles, it shows the best social and emotional adjustment and a low level of behavior problems.