Helping or Hovering? The Effects of Helicopter Parenting on College Students’ Well-Being
- 30k Downloads
Parental involvement is related to many positive child outcomes, but if not developmentally appropriate, it can be associated with higher levels of child anxiety and depression. Few studies have examined the effects of over-controlling parenting, or “helicopter parenting,” in college students. Some studies have found that college students of over-controlling parents report feeling less satisfied with family life and have lower levels of psychological well-being. This study examined self-determination theory as the potential underlying mechanism explaining this relationship. College students (N = 297) completed measures of helicopter parenting, autonomy supportive parenting, depression, anxiety, satisfaction with life, and basic psychological needs satisfaction. Students who reported having over-controlling parents reported significantly higher levels of depression and less satisfaction with life. Furthermore, the negative effects of helicopter parenting on college students’ well-being were largely explained by the perceived violation of students’ basic psychological needs for autonomy and competence.
KeywordsHelicopter parenting Depression Satisfaction with life Basic psychological needs Self-determination theory
- Bronson, P., & Merryman, A. (2009). Nurture shock: New thinking about children. New York, NY: Twelve.Google Scholar
- Cline, F. W., & Fay, J. (1990). Parenting with love and logic: Teaching children responsibility. Colorado Springs, CO: Pinon Press.Google Scholar
- Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West, S. G., & Aiken, L. S. (2003). Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences (3rd ed.). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
- Costell, A. B., & Osborne, J. W. (2005). Best practices in exploratory factor analysis: four recommendations for getting the most from your analysis. Practical Assessment Research & Evaluation, 10. Available online: http://pareonline.net/getvn.asp?v=10&n=7.
- DeVellis, R. F. (1991). Scale development. Newbury Park, NJ: Sage.Google Scholar
- Erikson, E. H. (1968). Identity: Youth and crisis. New York, NY: Norton.Google Scholar
- Fingerman, K. L., Cheng, Y.-P., Wesselmann, E. D., Zarit, S., Fustenberg, F., & Birditt, K. S. (2012). Helicopter parents and landing pad kids: Intense parental support of grown children. Journal of Marriage and Family, 74, 880–896.Google Scholar
- Gibbs, N. (2009). The growing backlash against overparenting. Time Magazine. Retrieved from http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1940697,00.html.
- Hofer, B. K., & Moore, A. S. (2010). IConnected parent. New York, NY: Free Press.Google Scholar
- Hunt, J. (2008). Make room for daddy…and mommy: Helicopter parents are here! The Journal of Academic Administration in Higher Education, 4, 9–11.Google Scholar
- Johnston, M. M., & Finney, S. J. (2010). Measuring basic needs satisfaction: Evaluating previous research and conducting new psychometric evaluations of the Basic Needs Satisfaction in General Scale. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 35, 280–296. doi: 10.1016/j.cedpsych.2010.04.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Levine, M. (2006). The price of privilege. New York, NY: HarperCollins.Google Scholar
- Marano, H. E. (2008). A nation of wimps: The high cost of invasive parenting. New York, NY: The Crown Publishing Group.Google Scholar
- Muthén, L. K., & Muthén, B. O. (1998–2010). Mplus user’s guide (6th ed.). Los Angeles, CA: Muthén & Muthén.Google Scholar
- Nelson, M. K. (2010). Parenting out of control: Anxious parents in uncertain times. New York, NY: New York University Press.Google Scholar
- Shoup, R., Gonyea, R. M., & Kuh, G. D. (2009). Helicopter parents: Examining the impact of highly involved parents on student engagement and educational outcomes. Paper presented at the 49th Annual Forum of the Association for Institutional Research, Atlanta, Georgia. Retrieved from http://cpr.iub.edu/uploads/AIR%202009%20Impact%20of%20Helicopter%20Parents.pdf.
- Soenens, B., Vansteenkiste, M., Lens, W., Luyckx, K., Goossens, L., Beyers, W., et al. (2007). Conceptualizing parental autonomy support: Adolescent perceptions of promotion of independence versus promotion of volitional functioning. Developmental Psychology, 43, 633–646. doi: 10.1037/0012-1618.104.22.1683.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Somers, P., & Settle, J. (2010). The helicopter parent: Research toward a typology. College and University: The Journal of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars, 86, 18–27.Google Scholar
- Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2007). Using multivariate statistics. Boston, MA: Pearson.Google Scholar
- Deci, E., & Ryan, R. (n.d.). Self-determination theory: An approach to human motivation and personality. Retrieved from http://www.selfdeterminationtheory.org/.