Sunday Meeting: Autonomy

We forget sometimes there are things we cannot do for our children.

This parenting generation is frequently referred to with descriptors like “helicopter parents” and “tiger moms”. Young adults who are being raised with this unprecedented overprotective parenting style are criticized for their lack of maturity and notable lack of ability to navigate life’s little challenges without a descent into despair. Further, a longitudinal research study outlined in the Journal of Child Development showed that a controlling parenting style can hinder not only autonomy, but also relationship development among teens and young adults.

The idea that we cannot shelter and protect our children from harm – is a notion worth thinking about.

A few summers ago, The Atlantic ( published a great article on the virtues of sending kids to summer camp.  In it, the author, Jessica Lahey, interviews psychologist Michael Thompson, a New York Times best-selling author who, at that time, had recently published Homesick and Happy: How Time Away from Parents Can Help Kids Grow.

In his book, Dr. Thompson set out a list of things parents cannot do for their children, no matter how creative, smart or desperate they are to do so:campers chop tree
  1. We cannot make our children happy. buy viagra fast
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  3. We cannot make friendships for our children or micro-manage their friendships.
  4. We cannot successfully double as our child’s agent, manager, and coach.
  5. We cannot create the “second family” for which our child yearns in order to facilitate his or her own growth.
  6. It is increasingly apparent that we, parents, cannot compete with or limit our children’s total immersion in the online, digital, and social media realms. cialis 5mg
  7. We cannot keep our children perfectly safe, but we can drive them crazy trying.
  8. We cannot make our children independent. buy viagra cheap online australia


  • Marta Villa Reply

    Appreciate the words of wisdom!

  • Susie Konkel Reply

    My summers at Camp Arcadia were wonderful! Being at camp and participating in all the activities helped me grow emotionally and really helped my self-esteem as a little girl and continued throughout the summers. Working on getting various levels in activities and working towards my paddle was very helpful and rewarding. The activity levels challenged me to strive and accomplish goals that I thought were nearly impossible! The friendships with campers and staff are very special to me and these friendships are always in my heart and forever in my thoughts.
    By attending camp in Maine (which was hundreds of miles from home) at Camp Arcadia has had a positive and influential impact in my life and my relationship with my family!!!! Thanks in to Camp Arcadia and my familyI am a self confident and strong you lady today! Thank you to my family for encouraging me to attend camp and thank you to all of the staff at Camp Arcadia for teaching and me giving me the fundamentals that made me who I am today!!!

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