Fostering Positive Mental Health: Striking a Balance in Strict Parenting Homes

Impact of Strict Parenting on Child's Mental Health

Within the sphere of parenting, the intricate balance between enforcing discipline and providing emotional support within strict parenting emerges as a pivotal determinant in molding the mental well-being of children.

Looking back, the impactful literary work ‘Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother,’ garnered widespread attention across the US and Europe back in 2011.

It sparked controversies that resonated with a fundamental inquiry: What should be the appropriate aspirations guiding our children’s upbringing?

During an exclusive interview conducted by HT Lifestyle, Dr. Shradha Malik, a highly regarded figure serving as the CEO and Founder of Athena Behavioral Health, provided noteworthy perspectives.

She placed significant emphasis on essential tactics directed towards cultivating a supportive and enriching atmosphere specifically tailored for strict parenting scenarios.

1. Effective Communication as the Foundation

Open, nonjudgmental conversations form the bedrock of fostering positive mental health in strict households.

Encouraging children to articulate their thoughts and emotions without fear of reproach aids in developing emotional intelligence and coping mechanisms, nurturing an environment of trust and safety within the family unit.

2. Realistic Expectations Over Unattainable Standards

While discipline holds significance, setting unattainable benchmarks often triggers feelings of inadequacy and stress.

Acknowledging children’s efforts, rather than solely celebrating achievements, fosters a healthy sense of self-worth, mitigating tendencies toward perfectionism-induced issues.

3. Granting Autonomy to Foster Resilience

Striking a delicate equilibrium between enforcing strict guidelines and granting autonomy holds significant importance.

Permitting children to make decisions appropriate for their age fosters resilience and self-confidence, facilitating their development as self-reliant individuals capable of confidently maneuvering through life’s intricate challenges and situations.

4. Balanced Lifestyle Beyond Strict Parenting

In case of strict parenting, the scarcity of chances for relaxation and recreational activities for the children can have adverse effects.

However, fostering an environment that promotes physical activity, hobbies, and diverse creative pursuits proves beneficial in not only managing stress but also in nurturing a comprehensive self-identity and personal development.

5. Parental Role Modeling Emotional Regulation


The behavior exhibited by parents has a profound impact on their children. Modeling healthy ways to handle emotions and stress provides children with valuable tools and strategies to effectively navigate and manage their own emotional challenges and frustrations.

6. Emphasizing Affection Alongside Discipline


Even within a framework of strictness, emphasizing and actively displaying love and affection to children stands as an equally crucial aspect.

Consistently demonstrating expressions of love and unwavering support play a pivotal role in ensuring that children feel deeply valued, thereby making a substantial contribution to their overall emotional well-being and development.

Praneet Mungali, an Education Entrepreneur and Trustee and Secretary of the Sanskriti Group of Schools in Pune, highlighted the evolving parental aspirations.

While a decade ago, the emphasis in many Indian households was primarily on equipping children for professional success, contemporary urban parents prioritize their children’s happiness and a fulfilling life.

Dr. Robert Waldinger’s insights from the Harvard Study of Adult Development underscore the pursuit of emotional well-being and secure attachment styles in children as paramount goals.

Tips and methods proposed even for strict parenting households revolve around simple yet impactful actions.

Unpacking “Good Life” for Children: Insights from Research and Practice

Research findings underscore the significance of shared rituals like family dinners, fostering a sense of connection and well-being among family members.

Praneet Mungali highlighted the enduring positive impact of childhood family rituals on lifelong mental health.

Encouraging traits like generosity, curiosity, and facilitating discussions on emotions emerge as pivotal methods.

However, Mungali emphasized that a ‘good life’ for children doesn’t necessarily mean an easy one.

Facing challenges, distress, and emotional fluctuations, while being supported and guided by adults who allow room for mistakes, forms an integral part of nurturing resilient individuals.

In the intricate realm of parenting, amalgamating discipline with emotional sustenance emerges as a cornerstone for fostering resilient, emotionally balanced children, capable of navigating life’s complexities with confidence and grace.


Mental Health Topics (A-Z)

  • Fostering Positive Mental Health: Striking a Balance in Strict Parenting Homes