“Superior Parenting?” Is One Style Really Enough?

1636 words - 7 pages

The question most new parents, even future parents, ask themselves is will they raise successful kids? Even if it comes to mind the day of birth or even the last day of high school, parents are always concerned if they are raising their kids in a successful way or if they are just messing up completely. Just like there is variety in cultures there is variety in parenting styles. Two articles that briefly describe two different parenting styles is the author of The Wall Street Journal Amy Chua’s “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior”, and author and educator Rick Ackerly of the “‘Superior Parenting?’ That’s Crazy Talk. Children Need only 3 Things”. But is there really a method that is superior to the rest?
In “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” Amy Chua describes the differences between Chinese and Western mothers. Chua explains how Western parents worry more about how their kids are going to feel if the parent says the wrong thing, and on the contrary Chinese parents think that their kid should be strong enough to take any shameful thing their parent might say. Second she says, “Chinese parents believe that their kids owe them everything”(para 15), and that the child should always obey and try to make their parents proud because that is their only responsibility. Third, she states that Chinese parents think that they know what is best for their kids and that is why they must decide on everything for their kids. According to Chua, Chinese parents believe they do not have to consider what the child’s desire and preference might be.
Rick Ackerly argues that Amy Chua is wrong and that “no mother I [he] have known would claim that their parenting style is superior”(para 4). According to Ackerly, kids only need three things from their parents; the parents undying love, to be respected as decision makers, and the accurate feedback about their decisions. Ackerly says that the undying love comes natural to all mothers no matter how great they are. Also that kids are decision makers since the “get-go”(para 7), and all parents should respect that. Third, he states to always give accurate feedback on the children’s decisions, and that parents should give feedback that isn’t softened up but they should be forward.
Although Chua and Ackerly both identify accurate parenting styles and techniques that could be used in different scenarios, Chua shows us a method that has a lot of authority and leaves the decision making to the parent, while Ackerly demonstrates independence in the child as decision makers. Chua is much more judgmental, her purpose throughout the article was judge the main difference between Chinese and Western mothers, which we can see she demonstrates Chinese mothers superior. As Ackerly is more positive about things, more laid back about what the child decides to do, and leaves everything up to them. But there is no wrong or right; all parents want what is best for their children. Both articles make me think of many successful people who come from...

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