Wenn übermotivierte Eltern ihren Kindern schaden

Wenn übermotivierte Eltern ihren Kindern schaden

In between violin lesson, early English and homework: More and more parents are putting their offspring under enormous pressure to perform out of concern for the future prospects of their children. An entire production industry benefits from this. But the little ones suffer. Experts regard this as an alarming aberration.

(From S. Schellhaaß and D. Siems)

The best thing was that we could always go out without the parents

When Konstantin talks about the past summer holidays at the North Sea, a ray of light shines over his face. "The best thing was that we could always go out without our parents," says the seven-year-old. The Berlin boy and his siblings were on the road with the handcart on Juist, sometimes playing horse-drawn carriage with other children, sometimes detective, climbing trees or picnicking. Pressure to perform for children That children walk the streets alone, unattended by adults and without professional animation, was normal in earlier generations - and by no means signalled neglect. Today, the daily lives of the little ones are very different. The schedule of the well-kept offspring is full. Between music lessons, sports clubs, early English and private lessons there is little time for spontaneity. And they are never unattended anyway, because the Mama-Taxi is everywhere  Because parents want to create the best starting conditions for their children, families today are under unprecedented pressure to perform. Even babies just a few months old find themselves in the grind of special education. Baby swimming, Mozart sound reinforcement, the Pekip crawling group and the search for the ideal day care centre: many mothers - less often it is the fathers - often don't know where their head is anymore when it comes to stress. And they always ask themselves the anxious question: "Does my child develop well enough?"

Experts see the attempt to optimize the children as an alarming erroneous development. Child psychologist and book author Wolfgang Bergmann speaks of "over-control" by parents and other caregivers. "The children promoted in such a way are forced into an enormous achievement pressure , warn it. This does not serve at all the development of the personalities, rather an impoverishment of their abilities threatens - and in the worst case even mental and health damage could be the result. The Swiss paediatrician and scientist Remo H. Largo also warns that many parents today often do too much for good....

Malicious overload

Surprisingly, these are not necessarily the higher earners. As the German Institute for Economics (DIW) proves in a recent study, it is not primarily the parents' income that decides whether a child attends a private school or not, but their educational level. "It is quite clearly the parents who have the Abitur who are increasingly sending their children to private schools," says DIW expert Katharina Spieß. Middle-class parents in particular are making enormous efforts to optimally support their children. This increased educational orientation is quite positive in a knowledge society. "One should not underestimate the newly awakened ambition of many parents to give their children as much education as possible," says the Berlin historian Paul Nolte. Many parents have recognised that with a good education they "do more for the future of their children than if they pass on a semi-detached house to them later". But it becomes alarming when the children are overwhelmed. Many families find themselves in a real state of emergency when it comes to whether the offspring gets the desired recommendation for the grammar school. Many people see this as a ticket for later material prosperity and social recognition. Accordingly, no recommendation means the danger of falling into later unemployment. Not all children can withstand the pressure.

Increasingly, even primary school children require therapeutic treatment. At first it is abdominal pain, later it is followed by a blockade of performance up to depression. Up to ten percent of 12- to 17-year-olds, says child psychologist Bergmann, have or have had depression. That is why he advises serenity. "It is wonderful when a child is average - and happy."

(Source: www.welt.de)

*** Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version) ***

Über die Autorin/den Autor
Diana Saft ist staatlich anerkannte Heilpädagogin und Heilerziehungspflegerin. Sie sammelte bisher Erfahrungen in einem Seniorenheim, in einem Wohnheim für Menschen mit Behinderungen, in einem integrativen Kindergarten und in einem deutschen Kindergarten in den USA.

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