I don't know anything about Dr. Laura Markham, but on the Aha! Parenting website, she poses the question "What's Wrong With Permissive Parenting?", then she goes on to answer that question with a very thorough list of exactly what is wrong with it.
She states that "most good parents hate the idea of causing their
child grief. They don’t want to incite a tantrum, and they
certainly don’t want their child to be angry at them". This is certainly true, but sometimes you just have to get over it. I hate tantrums and whining and arguing, but I love my kiddo too much to give into to all of her wishes. I've seen rotten kids, and I don't want one.
The second item on her list is the one that resonates the most with me--giving in to your kids at the expense of someone else. One of Markham's examples is fellow diners at a restaurant, but it could apply to just about any situation.
A few weeks ago I was at a friend's pool and some of us were climbing up the steps to the water slide. One boy, about 10 years old, pushed past me and sat down at the top of the slide. The lifeguard, who was right there, said nothing, so I said, "Seriously? You are going to cut in front of me? That's not cool". (I know better than to touch someone else's kid.) He looked slightly sheepish, said "sorry"...and went down the slide. Then, his friend, about the same age, tried to push past me. I blocked him and told him to go to the end of the line. I even pointed to the end of the line, just in case his problem was poor eyesight rather than a lack of manners. And the lifeguard? Still doing nothing, but this kid went to the back of the line. The rest of my pool time was fun and without incident, but I spent way too much time stewing about being the only one to point out those kids' unacceptable behavior. Yes, some people (most people?) don't want to be bothered, but, like I said above, get over it! Especially when it's your own kid.
As I said, that one item stood out the most with me, but I agree with Dr. Markham's entire list. I will have to continue my commentary in my next post. Read the entire article here: