KUALA LUMPUR: The style parents use to educate their children must be changed from that of a permissive approach to an authoritative one so that they will be more responsible for the safety of their children, especially when far apart.

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) Clinical Psychology and Behavioural Health Programme, Faculty of Health Sciences senior lecturer Assoc Prof Dr Shazli Ezzat Ghazali said an authoritative approach means parents striving to create a space for good communication with their children to ensure their needs are met, thus, producing a sense of comfort for their children.

A permissive approach, meanwhile, is when parents allow their children to “be on their own” in doing any activity, including solving problems.

“An authoritative style of parenting is the best method in providing understanding or guidance for their children, who will feel guided and reciprocated and, as such, grow up well.

“For example, a two-year-old child will surely not understand half the things and still fully rely on his parents to teach him. However, if he is taught authoritatively, the child will know the rationale behind his every action, besides creating mutual affection and, thus, avoiding any unwanted incidents,” he told Bernama today.

Shazli Ezzat, who is also the president-elect of the Malaysian Psychological Association, said children who receive affection through this kind of approach will listen to and obey the instructions and guidance of their parents.

He said this when commenting on the incident of a two-year-old boy who was found dead last night in Bukit Baru, Melaka after being reported missing. He was believed to have fallen into a drain.

Meanwhile, Assoc Prof Harris Shah Abd Hamid of the Faculty of Management, Education and Humanities of University College of MAIWP International said parents must do their best not to expose their children to dangerous situations, especially those who still can’t differentiate between good and bad or safe and dangerous.

“The cognitive maturity level of children is different and it will usually take time for them to understand what is said to be safe or dangerous.

“This happens naturally, so parents need to always remind or guide them about these things,” he said.–Bernamapix

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