Understanding what kind of parenting can effectively foster positive outcomes, including early internalization, is a perennial question. My friend’s situation is considered as an uninvolved parenting style where rejecting- neglecting parents are disengaged and neither demanding nor responsive. My fifteen-year-old friend Tracy told a story. The only thing her mother could do was to throw Tracy in front of the TV that was expected to entertain her because her body's old. She really did not have enough energy to be chased by her daughter or going to the grocery store was a complete disaster. It would take all the energy that she had for the entire day. The zoo was extremely hard for her. For many years, Tracy rarely saw her mother, who was busy partying and dating. Thus, her mother neglected her and the older sister and put the relationship with boyfriends on the first place instead of taking care of her daughters. In fact, Tracy told me that later their only communication was the occasional $5 bill and a note left on the kitchen counter telling 8-year-old Tracy to buy food with the money. Tracy articulated the frustrations she felt and the difficulties that she, as an eight-year-old girl, had experienced in demonstrating her competence, her abilities.
For this reason, the effect of these uninvolved parenting treatments may be attributable to the fact that Tracy hopes to differ from her own mother by paying more attention to bringing up her children. Now, Tracy, the 19-year-old pregnant mother of two sons, when describing her parenting, she referred to her own mother: “I think I put a lot more effort into it just because I saw the way my mom raised me and my sister, and I don't think she did a good job with us. So I try and give them something that I never had, and I try and do better than what I think we had. Actually, I try to be exactly the opposite as my mom was. I actually think, “What would my mother do?” and then I do the exact opposite”.
According to Baumrind and Maccoby, Tracy had illustrated that children who have been brought up by rejecting- neglecting parents also compare themselves specifically with their own parents. In this case, Tracy hopes to have dramatically different relationships with her children unlike those she had experienced with her own parents. Of course, she will try to be more lenient and permissive and commented that she will never force her children to do things they do not want to do. Thus, here is a fact of superiority. In comparing herself with her mother, Tracy has found reason to criticize and discredit her, while legitimizing herself.
Her concerns as a parent revolve around proving that she is financially capable of providing her children with necessary attention, having children who are developmentally advanced, accepting and rejecting parenting advice as she has chosen to be better parent than her mother was. By placing herself as a winner in a self-proclaimed competition with her mother, Tracy works to save her face as she has been brought up by her disengaged mother.
To conclude, it should be noticed that Baumrind’s and Maccoby’s hypotheses have been failed because the competitive nature of the “teen” parenting culture is driven now by their age, the manner in which these competitions are carried out has been shaped in different ways by the race and social class of the teen mothers. Besides, the culture of competitive parenting found its origins in the teens' efforts to manage the stigma cast on them and their aggressive attempts to defend themselves. Hence, Tracy expects to have stronger relationships with her children than she had with her mother. Besides, many other young women also plan to parent quite opposite than from their parents did, whom they have criticized for being neglectful, for never being there, and for not paying enough attention to them. Comparing their own parenting styles with the parents' and with other older parents' styles it may result in the situation that the young mothers are shown in a positive light as extremely caring and loving parents unlike the bringing up of the previous generations, where parents were always tired, unenthusiastic, too strict and neglectful.