I'm a first-time mom with a 16 month old...and boy do I have questions! :-)
So, when I worked at a University, there were terms used for parents who "hovered" too much over their children (who, at 18 years, are considered adults!). They were called "Helicopter Parents".
Recently, a new term, "Tank Parents" has arisen, as these parents are no longer just "hovering"; they are down on the ground with their kids.
What do you think the balance is between "hovering" and letting your child be independent and make mistakes from which to learn from. Of course, there is a big difference between 16 month-old and 18 year-old!
I took my toddler to a playground, where he was by far the smallest and youngest, but we were in the toddler area. I couldn't ask all five kids to go play on the bigger play area (right?!). My son was not scared, and even though he was being crawled over in the tunnel, he was fine and loved it! At what point do I take him away, if I sense danger, vs. let him be independent?
So many questions! :-)
Do you have any of these same issues with independence vs. "hovering"? (sorry, I couldn't think of a positive word)