Why Do Parents Try to Solve the Problems of Their College Student Children?
In my article entitled A Parent Guide for Helping College Students, I explain the phenomenon that causes some well-intending parents to be labeled Helicopter Parents. Many (most?) college faculty members and administrators think this is a problem. And understanding a problem is the first step to a solution.
Here is where I need your feedback. What can an instructor do to help students help themselves when problems arise? It is easy to suggest that a kindhearted, carrying, approachable instructor will be confronted directly by his or her students, but that is not always the case. The dynamics in some families are such that students want their parents to solve their problems. Plus, many students fear retribution if they approach their instructors. Many others lack the interpersonal skills it takes to do so in a mature manner.
So, are college faculty members doomed to remain the target of these sometimes aggressive and confrontational parents? Or, is there something that faculty can do? Perhaps there are proactive measures they can take. This is something faculty and administrators need to think about.
© 2010 Paul A. Hummel, Ed.D.
Posted June 13, 2010