When it comes to parenting, consistency matters because the brain of the child is new to experiences, it's still learning and making sense of the chaotic world we live in. Sometimes, a child gets overwhelmed but in these moments, what is expected of a parent is consistency.
Inconsistent parenting is when a parent responds differently to a similar stimulus. If a child misbehaves, one day a parent might take away the child's privileges to let him know that this behavior can not be tolerated but on the second day, the parent forsakes the same behavior. The child in this scenario gets confused because he can't predict anymore what will happen next. This sort of uncertainty is chaotic for the child's brain. The child might get insecure and starts acting out.
Other than superficial behavioral symptoms, the child may also develop an anxious attachment style in response to inconsistency exhibited by a parent.
Symptoms of anxious attachment style in a child
- Crying inaccessibly
- Gets infuriated when a parent leaves
- Being clingy and needy
- Won't mix up with kids of the same age
- Stays anxious
- Gets frightened with strangers
- Being aggressive
- Weak relationship with peers
In similar circumstances, it is important for parents to be mindful of their child's needs.