Telegraph 21 June 2013
Official Government advice telling people how to bring young children up should be torn up because it is “corrosive and harmful” and can damage family life, a new academic report argues.
The so-called “positive parenting” approach which involves avoiding punishment or even criticism while constantly accentuating the positive can do more harm than good and simply “sets parents up to fail”, it concludes.
In the study, published in the journal Ethics and Education, Helen Reece, an expert in family law at the London School of Economics, argues that the official obsession with being “nice” to children all of the time is “arduous, if not impossible” and can simply destroy the spontaneity of the parent-child relationship.
She argues that in extreme cases it has led to parents involved in contact or care cases being judged against an impossible standard and then unfairly marked down by social workers and even judges with major consequences for the rest of their lives.
…Ms Reece called for the Government to remove advice on such issues from official
guidelines while still giving parents important information on matters such as a
safe temperature for a baby or nutrition.