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Today’s parents are under pressure to do everything for their kids. The COVID-19 pandemic has added even more pressure to parenting as some parents are spending the longest time with their kids for the first time.

Perfectionist parents may not only be harming themselves but may also harm the child’s well-being. Perfectionism results from a combination of environmental factors and inborn tendencies. These can include excessive demands or praise from teachers and parents, strict observation by perfectionist parents, and conditional parental love.

Extreme perfectionism causes several problems like eating disorders, performance and social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, migraine headaches, depression, and suicide.

Characteristics of perfectionism

Leading characteristics of perfectionist parents include having high expectations, being self-conscious, self-critical, and easily embarrassed. In addition, perfectionism is caused by feelings of inadequacy and low self-confidence, and anxiety about making mistakes. Perfectionists are sensitive to criticism; they are big procrastinators and always avoid difficult or stressful situations.  Other characteristics include;

  • Being emotional
  • Being critical of others
  • Having difficulty in deciding
  • Having persistent headache

Who are the Perfectionist Parents?

All parents desire to be the best for their children as much as they can. However, the level of perfection among parents differs among different categories. Among the most perfectionist parents are working mothers. This is because many working mothers are high achievers in their careers and want to extend the same to parenting. In addition, working mothers experience a lot of pressure with their work, and emotional stress can extend to children. Many of them always feel they are falling back in terms of parenting.

Fathers often feel the guilty of parenting, and half don’t consider themselves to be good parents. Recent research shows that today’s fathers are spending three times more time with their children than those in 1965. Still, half of today’s dads feel they are not spending enough time with their kids.

Perfectionist parenting makes the kid believe that they are failures if they don’t achieve the highest standards. This puts the kid under pressure to be the best, leading to malpractices like cheating to get good grades. Children should have some space to make mistakes and learn from their correction.