‘Lawn Mower Parents’ Are The New ‘Helicopter Moms’

You’ve likely heard of ‘helicopter parents’ and ‘tiger moms’, but now there’s a new type of parent– the ‘lawn mower parent.’ In recent weeks this type of parent has gone viral after an anonymous middle school teacher shared a story on the educator blog WeAreTeachers about an alleged run-in with a real-life “lawn mower dad.” The teacher details how the father of a middle-schooler went out of his way to deliver an insulated water bottle to his daughter at school, as if it were an essential item. The anonymous teacher writes, “Lawnmower parents go to whatever lengths necessary to prevent their child from having to face adversity, struggle, or failure. Instead of preparing children for challenges, they mow obstacles down so kids won’t experience them in the first place.” Professor of educational psychology at the University of Victoria, Dr. Jillian Roberts, says this type of coddling can be harmful to a child, saying, “Growing up is about learning to continuously adapt to new and more challenging situations. When parents deprive their children of opportunities to practice these skills, their parenting is actually detrimental to their kids. In fact, what they are communicating is: ‘I do not think you are capable of handling this on your own.'” The WeAreTeachers blog has been shared over 12,000 times on Facbook, and has gotten over 2,300 likes.