Grandparents fear today’s children are doomed!

A majority of grandparents surveyed in The Australian Seniors Series: Raising Modern Australia believe children are doomed because of modern parenting styles, with 81 per cent fearing for the future happiness of their grandchildren.

The survey of 1000 grandparents also found nearly three in five believe parenting styles have become somewhat or considerably worse since they were raising children, shared Illawarra mercury.

More than half believe their grandchildren will be much less capable, self-sufficient, resilient, disciplined and have much less moral character.

“They also believe their grandchildren will be negatively impacted by the praise and reward-inspired culture that exists today,” the survey said.

The survey also found parents believe grandparents waved off concerns about dietary requirements and personal safety for children too easily.

When Lynette Honeysett was a child in the 1960s, discipline was swift and sometimes harsh.

“We got smacked with a wooden spoon if we were naughty, and it happened on a regular basis,” she said. “I can remember copping quite a few hidings.”

Ms Honeysett said she believed parents paid too much attention to their smartphones when they were with their children: “It’s a particular bugbear of mine. I say to Joel ‘Get off your phone’.”

She also said we need to avoid helicopter parenting.

“Let her run, fall over,” she said. “If she breaks an arm, she’s going to learn a lesson that way.”

However Dr Justin Coulson is concerned that the ongoing attitude of  “well I turned out okay“ is really not helping.

“We think we turned out okay because we don’t know how we might have turned out had things been different.

“Do you really think that being yelled at or hit with a wooden spoon is going to create better people? I don’t. My feeling is that more kindness will lead to so many improved outcomes for our children. There is so much pain in the world. Better parenting can reduce that pain.”

Share your comments below.

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  • As an older mum I have noticed the differences in how children are being brought up. My children range from 37 to 6 and I have a 5 year old grand daughter. The way I brought up my older three is different to how my younger three are being brought up. My grand daughter has more freedom in what she wants and is allowed to watch a lot of screen time. My own younger children twin six year olds up bringing is different to their niece. I expect my lot to help with chores and to have outside time. They also have a less screen time then their niece. I do admit times are changing and there seems to be more dangers around then there were when I was younger. I was walking myself to school at five, yet was still walking my older children when they were older. It is hard to know what we are doing is right or wrong, only time will tell.


  • I don’t believe in using a wooden spoon or belting children but I do believe in letting them play and learning what their limits are and am happy to see them walk to school by themselves instead being dropped there by the parents. They have to learn self-sufficiency and resilience and they don’t when they have helicopter parents. Amazingly children in a single parent household learn these things because their one parent has to work and cannot be in two places at once.


  • I am 100% sure that smartphone and all devices are not helping. I can see myself using it to much but i am totally against hard discipline.

    • A system of technology free time is important and we have limits on technology time.
      It is essential to be present and not distracted by phones, computers and other technology.


  • There needs to be a balanced approach.


  • There is never any excuse for violence and it is never okay for an adult to use their trusted position in this manner.
    People need to use their words in interactions and not physical aggression.
    Teaching children to use words in communication is key and an essential life skill.


  • A balanced approach will always work best. Some kids are too molly coddled and some not given enough attention etc. It’s so hard to get it right in our busy lives today.


  • There needs to a balance of both things. with so many things happening around, you cant just leave a child on his own. Need a mix of both treatments.


  • The rules on child abuse may not be the same in all States. I remember my niece coming home from school repeating what her class had been told within a couple of weeks of starting school in Reception Class. You are not allowed to yell at the kids and even if you don’t use bad words it is verbal abuse. You almost can’t touch your kids. You can’t hold them to stop them doing something they shouldn’t you can’t stop them walking out the door and going wherever they choose. When they get into trouble the first question you hear is “where are the parents. Some don’t care, you’ve got no power to stop them. Spme kids you can explain the reason several times but they will do what they want to anyway. They were also told that if they didn’t want to do what their parents ask them to do they don’t have to “kids have rights” Some kids are smart, parents are adults, so are teachers. Some reckoned they didn’t have to obey the teachers either. They wondered why the kids suddenly decided to muck around in class as far as the teachers were concerned.


  • I so believe this statement and action should not be used “Let her run, fall over,” she said. “If she breaks an arm, she’s going to learn a lesson that way.” Yes I do not agree with the helicopter parenting thing but at times care should be taken. It is a known fact that breaks and injuries to bones causes arthritis to set in in later life.


  • I know kids who say they don’t bother to try to talk to their Mum becuase she is always on her phone – on facebook, playing games or checking emails. The Mum says the kids don’t talk to her about things. The kids take their grandparents or other close relatives into their confidence instead. How many children are taught to be polite and show respect to others – adults or other children?. How many parents teach their children to say please and thank you, yet never say please to their children? A lot from what I’ve observed in some families.


  • I’ve 2 girls in care who have been brought up where hitting with the belt is a normal form of discipline. This was normal years ago, but not in this time. These girls have severe problems.
    Don’t get me wrong I do agree that it’s good to be consequent and also that there’s no need to helicopter parent, building resilience, moral and character. But we can do so in a loving and carinfg way.


  • Every generation has their own opinion.


  • Only time will tell.


  • I really can’t stand when people say that there was no harm in something and they turned out fine. In particular if applied to smacking kids!! No. If people are allowed to smack kids, why is there so much outrage when a husband hits his wife? It’s exactly the same thing!!!
    That nowadays too many parents just look at their phones instead of communicating with their kids is another thing. And, sadly, very true.


  • I agree with the grandparents in the survey.


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