Baby Bird: Letting Your Children Fail

Photo Credit: D. Quarles. Pictured: B. Quarles, @the_ben-fisher.

When a baby bird is trying to hatch, it will peck the shell until it cracks open and falls away, and then the bird is finally able to emerge. If some overly-ambitious helper comes along to¬†crack the shell and “help” the baby, it will probably die. The pecking process actually strengthens the baby bird’s muscles and stimulates its brain and those skills are essential if it is to survive on its own.

Consider parenting our own children. Don’t we hear ourselves whine endlessly that so many young people don’t have the skills they need to be self-sustaining adults because their parents have lovingly and with the best of intentions done everything for them? Could it be true that over-parenting is the biggest problem facing young people today?

You know you say it. I do too. Read more