I have great parents, they have always been vigilant when concerning my future while allowing me a reasonable level of autonomy.  I love them for allowing me that freedom; however, many of my friends live with a very different style of parenting.  Progressively, there are teeming numbers of “more involved”  caretakers, changing what it means to be a parent in the United States.  These Helicopter Parents, Go-Get-Em Dads and Tiger Moms, passionately push and prod their children so they are picture-perfect, giving them the best opportunities to make the most of life.  But these kids do not, they cannot; they never learned how to do anything for themselves.

Helicopter Parents, designated such as they hover around their children’s every decision and guide them along an optimized path,  are the bane of the modern college student’s self-initiative.  In college, even when these subdued children are continents away, this parenting style means the  umbilical cord is never cut; these kids cannot think for themselves.  Many young adults are in constant communication with their parents. Arthur Levine, a renown sociologist who studies college students, notes in his latest book Digital Natives and Their Customs  “One in five college kids are in touch with their parents three or more times a day, and 41 percent are in touch every day. ”  I hope many of these communications are simple text messages and Snapchats; inconsequential memos of nothing of significance.  But in the age of Helicopter Parents, these flurried texts and calls amount to the decision-making apparatus of too many college students.  This bodes poorly for America’s future.

The future workers of America are having their enterprising initiative diluted as they outsource decision-making to mommy and daddy.  This is not good, not for them and not for the country.   Empirical data indicates that those students afflicted with  helicopter parents have less accountability, worse grades, and are less satisfied with their lives.  Once their self-determination is undermined and stunted these children will never be able to forge their own healthy futures and identities.  The Helicopter Parents will just keep circling and circling, graying our collective future with apathetic colleagues incapable of seizing the day.  We will all lose out.

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