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The protector

The protector is perceived as nurturing and warm, and concerned with providing their child with security. It’s important for the protector to be available to their child and try to understand what their child needs.

Children who grow up with this type of parent will seek out the parent when things get hard and often find that they are seen and understood.

It can be difficult for the protector to let go when their child wants to explore more of the world, and this type of parent can therefore be perceived as overprotective. In stressful situations with their child, the protector will get worried quickly and may start catastrophizing.

However, the protector is most of the time stable and present for the child.

If you as a parent think that you often become overprotective, you can find out in which situations you become insecure. Becoming aware of what you do is a good start. You don't need to understand why this is the case at first, because some of us just are more overprotective without there being a specific reason for this.

If it bothers you, you can find someone you trust and talk to them about it. It often helps to express things you worry about in words.

Ask yourself:

  • In what situations with my child do I become anxious or worried?
  • Is it something that bothers me over time, or does the worry go away quickly?
  • How do I behave when I`m worried? Is there a typical way or does it vary?

There are several programmes for parents where you don't need to be experiencing major challenges to be able to participate.

In programmes such as COS-P and ICDP, you will get to know yourself as a parent and meet other parents you can talk things over with. This is offered at a number of family welfare offices and health centres.

And remember: Your child won't be harmed by your being slightly overprotective or anxious. However, it can be a good idea to think about how you as a mother or father deal with difficult emotions and challenges in your own life, because children learn from the way we as parents handle situations and take this with them further in life.

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The protector