9 Ultimate Examples of Permissive Parenting

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I bet you will agree when I tell you that permissive parenting seems to be on the rise.

So…you want some clear examples of permissive parenting? That shouldn’t be too hard. If you look around you, no doubt you will be able to spot a few. But we have some great examples for you.

Once you see these “9 Ultimate Examples of Permissive Parenting” you will be an instant expert at identifying permissive parents.

They are all around you, and you probably already know instinctively when you see it. However, often times people wonder about it because parenting is a complicated business.

Is it possible that permissive parents are doing a better job of parenting than the rest of us?

This article will take a close look at this parenting style, and give examples of the typical dynamics involved. 

Let’s start off with this 45 sec video clip from Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory:

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If there was one book on parenting that we could recommend, it would THIS ONE.

  • Are you trying to raise a strong-willed child?
  • Are you struggling with conflicting parenting styles?
  • Are you actually using a proven dysfunctional parenting style?

Parents often have different parenting styles, and that can often create conflict in the family. Understanding this can save a lot of difficulties.

You see, parents that use the Permissive Parenting Style imagine that their children will discover for themselves what works and doesn’t work. It really is one of the dysfunctional parenting styles.

They imagine that their child’s natural curiosity will cause them to explore the positives and negatives of their choices and that they will learn accordingly.

The problem with that is…studies show that it’s just not so!

According to studies by psychologists, the permissive style of parenting tends to produce children that are impulsive, dependent, undisciplined, immature, manipulative, self-centered, and have poor social skills.

That is not a line up of character qualities that most parents I know want their child to exhibit.

Parents that are trying to raise a strong-willed child can easily struggle with permissive parenting because sometimes that just want to avoid the conflict by giving in. They think that peace will come if they give in to the child’s wishes.

Notice the top right quadrant of the diagram, looking at the Authoritative Parenting Style.

According to studies, children that are raised by authoritative parents tend on average to be self-assertive, independent, friendly, cooperative, well-adjusted, motivated, and competent.

Now that sounds more like good parenting! It is here that the following Bible verse comes to mind.

Proverbs 29:15 “The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame.”

So, you wanted some examples of Permissive Parenting? Here they are:

9 Ultimate Examples of Permissive Parenting

Example of Permissive Parenting #1: There are very few rules.

If you were to walk into the home of some permissive parents, you would notice that the child pretty much has free reign. The boundaries that most children have are not there.

If the child wants to eat cereal all the time, and watch TV or play their PS4 video games for endless hours, ok.

When the child doesn’t have school and wants to sleep in until noon, ok. If the child wants to dye the dog’s hair pink, ok.

You may be struggling not to laugh, but it’s true. When looking at examples of permissive parenting, the child is not bound by rules and expectations, they are allowed to indulge and overstep normal boundaries pretty much at will.

Example of Permissive Parenting #2: Rules are inconsistently enforced.

What few rules that permissive parents do set, they are enforced so inconsistently that the child feels no motivation to be obedient. You may have heard a parent tell their child 5 times to do something, and the child completely ignores them. 

When looking for examples of permissive parenting, you have heard the old routine, “I’m going to count to three, and then you better do what I said, 1…2…2 and a half….2 and three-quarters….2 and seven-eighths….2 and nine sixteenths…3”. At this point, the child has wandered off, distracted by something, and the parent sits there.

examples of permissive parenting 3Example of Permissive Parenting #3: Parent’s are very loving and nurturing (coddling).

Permissive Parenting is different than negligent parenting. The true motive of the permissive parent is love and affection. Their love for their child is obvious and sincere.

The thought of making their child cry breaks their heart. Having to enforce rules and punish their child goes against their idea of being a loving parent. On this example, I have compassion in that every child should have loving parents. The opposite is certainly far worse.

When considering examples of permissive parenting, we may judge their methods, but we cannot judge their motives here, love is always the greatest of motives.

examples of permissive parenting

Example of Permissive Parenting #4: Parent’s use bribes to manipulate their child.

“If you will get your room clean, I will give you an extra scoop of ice cream for dessert”.

“Be nice to your brother and you can pick out a candy bar when we go to the store.”

“Stop crying and I will give you a puppy and a balloon.” These are not ideas for you to use on your children, these are things that would sound a lot like what you would hear permissive parents say if you were to visit their home.

Example of Permissive Parenting #5: The family revolves around the child.

Typically, when considering examples of permissive parenting, the marriage relationship is secondary to the parenting relationship. This means that the child becomes the center of the family, and the parents are there to support that relationship.

There are obvious problems with that idea. It was the marriage that produced the child, and the child will eventually grow up and become adults. It is then that the potential problem arises. What happens to a marriage that has been child-centered, when the child grows up?

The biblical model shows us that God created Adam and Eve, and then He was finished. This puts the biblical family relationship with the marriage at the center, not the children.

Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Genesis 1:31 “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”

Notice that children were not in the picture yet, when God finished the creation.

Genesis 2:1–3 “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

examples of permissive parenting 2Example of Permissive Parenting #6: Parents rarely tell their child no.

When a permissive parent needs to refocus a child from what they are doing, they do their best to find other ways besides just telling them “no”.

There are probably many reasons for this but primarily it is an effort to avoid introducing a negative confrontation.

Example of Permissive Parenting #7: The family schedule at home is unstructured.

This would be a side effect of this parenting model, as keeping a child on a schedule requires discipline and enforcement. The idea goes against the family structure of the permissive parenting model.

Example of Permissive Parenting #8: The child receives very little, if any, discipline.

When the child or children of permissive parents go outside of their acceptable boundaries, there usually is not any punishment or discipline, they are just refocused towards better activities that are within the acceptable boundaries.

In looking at examples of permissive parenting, any real discipline that is given is done so passively that you probably would not label it as a discipline at all.

Example of Permissive Parenting #9: Disrespectfulness from the child is overlooked.

For a child to show disrespectfulness towards their parents or other people, is not considered a big infraction by most permissive parents. This would probably be considered “normal childish behavior” that should be tolerated.

The problems with that idea are obvious, and the consequences will be evident more and more when those children enter their teenage years.

Look at this infographic below:

Different Types of Parenting Styles you Need to be Aware of

From Visually.

For parenting help, Active Manhood highly recommends the Book “Shepherding a Child’s Heart” by Tedd Tripp

We hope that this article on examples of permissive parenting has been helpful in your study.

Permissive ParentingYou may want to check out our other article on the subject “5 Gigantic Problems of Permissive Parenting


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