Every parent wants their child to succeed in life. In a time when the value of an individual can be determined by a single letter, it’s not surprising to see that more and more parents are hovering over their child’s gradebook to immediately reprimand them for any grade that doesn’t meet their standard. Of course, the hypothetical benefit to this particular style of parenting is that grades will improve, but at what cost does this come at and are better grades seriously worth the price?
What does a tiger mom provide? According to research, having an authoritative figure, in this case the tiger mom, improves a student’s overall responsibility and productivity. According to a Junior at La Canada high School Samuel Seo, “My mom is probably the only reason why I have good grades.” Based on the research as well as the student’s opinion there are some clear benefits that indicate that the tiger mom method is actually a positive influence upon students.
However, based on several other student responses, the “tiger mom” or “helicopter parent” archetype can also cause several long term hurdles. The tallest hurdle was commonly agreed upon as stress. On top of the preexisting stress of school, always being shadowed by a predator ready to capitalize on a single error would cause any student to become anxious and in many cases, depressed. Secondly, having an authoritative figure making every decision reduces a student’s individuality. Allowing for a student to make his or her own mistakes to learn from them not only reduced levels of stress and anxiety, but also teaches an important lesson about independence that translates to other aspects in life.
A tiger mom cares about her child (at least I hope she does). I mean, why would she put in so much effort if she didn’t? But, when considering the approach to parent a student, especially today, it’s important to take into account both the positives and the negatives to the method in question. Allowing a student to be independent and develop as an individual will likely influence their long term success, something far more valuable than the four year university of a mom’s dreams.