The mistake of parents raising children to become ‘golden children’

The way a child is raised can significantly affect how they see the world, both positively and negatively.

According to psychologist Dr Brandy Smith, University of Memphis (USA), one of the most psychologically damaging parenting methods is the “golden child syndrome”. With this type of parenting, children understand that they are the “chosen object” to be perfect all the time and that nothing is allowed to go wrong.

This can cause a lot of big problems later in a child’s life, from difficulty setting boundaries to over-pleasing people. These children are even unnecessarily harsh with themselves, when they are not appreciated well by those around them.

What is “Golden Child”?

A golden child is a term that refers to a child who is “regarded” by the family as special but without basis, Smith explained. Basically, this means that children are expected to be good at everything, never make mistakes, and always have an obligation to fulfill their parents’ wishes, even if they don’t like it.

Psychologist Terri Cole further explains, the “golden child” always feels pressure from parents. If they want to continue to receive love, they must continue to get what their parents want and behave the way their parents dictated. They are also seen as role models that other children should strive to follow. This can create resentment and a sense of competition between siblings.

6 characteristics of the “golden child” syndrome. Graphics: The mind journal.

Symptoms of the “Golden Child” Syndrome

Always want to win

The “golden kids” need to do well because that’s the only way they get love and attention. Because they must always meet this expectation, they can work hard, even in any way, to achieve it.

No sense of self and fear of failure

For many “golden children”, their dreams are the dreams of their parents. The reason, Cole explains, is that adults are constantly looking for ways to make their feelings and desires central to a child’s life. As a result, children may feel lost and confused when trying to pursue their goals. They are also more prone to anxiety and depression due to the pressure to do things well.

Always try to please everyone

The “golden children” can get this disease because they try to meet the needs of their parents, then those around them, because that’s all they can.

Mature early

According to PhD, assistant professor Janelle S. Peifer at the University of Richmond, “golden children” often want to fulfill their parents’ dreams, so they tend to mature earlier than necessary. This means they turn away from childish chores because they may not be rewarded.

Being the “golden child” in a family can lead to many lasting problems in relationships such as friendships, future parenting, work and self-esteem. In addition, golden children may have trouble staying busy focusing on the needs of others. This can lead to two situations: they may turn themselves into other people’s slaves to please them, or, conversely, withdraw and become distant from others in the face of criticism. quote.

How to overcome the effects of the “golden child” syndrome?

There are many ways to heal, and raising awareness is the first step.

Don’t forget, it’s important for children to know who they are. They need guidance to shift their focus from pleasing their parents to looking inward to pleasing themselves. To truly introspect and discover yourself, to realize who you are and what you want, Cole recommends combining journaling, meditation and therapy, along with staying away from outside influences to be able to do it. In-depth exploration of your interests and desires.

Specific measures include:

Set boundaries effectively to maintain autonomy and agency within the family.

Identify habits that embarrass, avoid problems, or please people, then try to do the opposite.

Build and maintain sources of support, encouraging imperfections.

Thuy Linh (According to Yahoo Life)


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