Psychologist: Helicopter Parents Creating Emotionally Fragile Young Adults
Helicopter parents are creating a generation of complainers, unable to deal with real-world problems that were once considered minor, Dr. Peter Gray explained on "Fox and Friends."
Gray, a Boston College professor of psychology, penned a 2013 book focusing on issues that he says result from overprotective parents who don't let their kids play and learn on their own.
He explained that a number of studies have shown a "strong correlation" between over-controlling parenting and problems for young adults adjusting to life.
"Surveys of college counseling centers show that they're really overburdened with students coming for counseling for what used to be regarded as, more or less, minor bumps in the road," said Gray, explaining that college students' emotional fragility is becoming a serious problem.
Gray said children best learn how to be adults by being away from adults, exploring and figuring out for themselves what do if they get lost, get called a name, or get into a dispute.
"Kids need to get out and [have] adventures. If we continuously guide and monitor and protect our children, they don't have the opportunity to learn and solve their own problems," he said.
Gray said he's not suggesting little kids be placed into dangerous situations, but that children should be "allowed to do what they believe they can do."
Watch the interview above, and see Dr. Gray's book, Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life.
What do you think about Dr. Gray's advice for parents?