The overprotective father is a staple in so many family movies and TV sitcoms. They market it as an endearing quality for a dad to go above and beyond in order to protect his child from danger, hurt, pain (and boys.) But, what if your spouse's protectiveness has become unreasonable? What do you do when your child's emotional and social growth is affected by one parent's irrational fears? You might be wondering how to talk to your partner about being an overprotective dad in a way to which he will be receptive and understanding.
An overprotective dad is often reacting to his own insecurities as a parent. He may not feel confident in his decision-making abilities, and may worry that allowing his child a little leeway can open up the door to harm — and it's a harm that he will have to take accountability for. So, instead, he tries to avoid this situation by putting up a wall between his child and all the dangers of the world.
As a mom, I get it. I've caught myself being overprotective out of fear that the more I allow, the faster time will pass. Today she wants to ride her bike around the block, tomorrow around the neighborhood, and the next day she wants the car keys because she's going off to college. But, the truth is that children do grow up. They need to have age-appropriate experiences and nothing we do as parents will keep them little forever, and no number of rules and restrictions will keep them 100 percent safe.
Here are some ways to talk to your spouse if you feel that he is becoming an overprotective dad.