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Stop Enabling Your Adult Child

written by Laura Dabney, M.D. December 20, 2019
Stop Enabling Your Adult Child

As children enter adulthood it can be a challenge for some parents to understand the line between enabling and nurturing. We hear about parents who have tipped over the line to enabling, and they’ve been given names such as “helicopter” and “snowplow” parents. It can be scary to think that your help can actually be unwittingly hurting your child. So, how do you know where the line is between nurturing and enabling?  In this article, I give you three clues to help you find and stay on the right side of that line.

Is Your Adult Child Thriving?

While we want to see our children achieve the best and have all the opportunities possible, if we manage every aspect of their lives as they enter adulthood, we run the risk of undermining their independence. Helping our adult children can soon become making them too dependent on us, a risk that has become even more prevalent given the rising trend of adult children returning home after college. But an adult child living at home is not in and of itself enabling them.

So, how do you know if you are helping or hurting?
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