Four Parenting Styles & 5 Steps for Emotion coaching [Gottman Institute]

Four Parenting Styles

1) Dismissing style or “Just get over it”
– Involves ignoring emotions
– Parents may:
A) Tell the child that there is no reason to be sad
B) Suggest that the child’s feelings are not to be trusted
C) Dismiss the child’s emotions and discourage them from sharing how they are feeling

2) Disapproving style or “You shouldn’t feel that way”
– Children are taught:
A) Negative emotions are a waste of time
B) Negative emotions reveal bad character
C) Negative emotions need to be controlled
D) Children use negative emotions to manipulate parents
E) Emotions make a person week
F) Emotions therefore need to be controlled so as to survive

3) Laisser-faire style or “Anything goes”
– Involves letting things be
– Such a style fails to teach children about emotions
– Children may, as a result,
a) not be able to calm down when angry/sad/upset
b) Find it difficult to concentrate or learn new skills
c) May not do as well at school
d) May not pick up social cues, and find it more difficult to make friends

4) Emotion coaching style or “Empathise and guide”
– They learn about emotions particularly strong emotions
– All feelings are valued
– but Not all behaviours are valued

Five steps for emotion coaching:
1) Be aware of emotions
2) Connect with your child
3) Listen to your child
4) Name the child’s emotions
5) Help the child find good solutions

[Use emotion coaching sparingly & exercise judgment]

Source: Gottman Institute

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