Everyone has their own parenting style. I’m a “Helicopter Mom”. I hover.
I’m no military expert, but thanks to a little visit to Wikipedia, I’ve discovered that us helicopters serve many purposes:
Attack Helicopter: These work in close support with ground troops. This is the Mama Bear. You mess with my baby’s physical well-being; you’re gonna get blasted.
Transport Helicopter: They move the troops around. Every minivan mom/stay-at-home mom/sports mom understands this one. It’s why my three year old car is no longer under warranty–due to high mileage.
Observation Helicopter: These go in for recon and monitor the situation. I have thousands of photos of my kiddos that I love to make into DVD slideshows, photo books, and Facebook posts.
Maritime Helicopter: These maintain the perimeter. This is what helps us set boundaries. Maybe you shouldn’t hang out with that certain friend or eat 5 cupcakes.
Search & Rescue Helicopter: Self explanatory, but these will bail you out. Here’s where you’ll get all those hugs, kisses, and snuggles. It’s also where you’ll find a much needed heart-to-heart conversation.
Training Helicopter: Sometimes, in training operations, the military will use a lighter or less-equipped version of a helicopter to make things a little easier for the crew to learn on. This is classic parenting. Preparing your little one for the hard lessons before they have to endure it.
Wikipedia also defines a Helicopter Parent as “a parent who pays extremely close attention to a child’s or children’s experiences and problems, particularly at educational institutions.” That’s a good thing, right?
The helicopter is always at a distance offering support, interfering only when necessary. That’s how I like to picture myself. The helicopter can never take the place of the ground troops, which is why I also have to teach them independence & responsibility. Being supportive doesn’t mean that I don’t let them suffer the consequences of their actions, but it does mean that I can guide them through it and encourage better choices going forward.
I’ve also discovered that “hovering” gives me a great view of three amazing little lives. We have made so many memories, and I have felt so very involved in their childhood. I will support them, train them, and rescue them when they fall. One day, they will grow wings of their own, and I will let them fly.
Are you a Helicopter Mom? Which of the different helicopter styles do you most relate too?