Julie Lythcott-Haims provoked thought, introspection and plenty of laughs from her audience during a talk she presented on parenting Oct. 18 at Lincoln-Way East High School.
Frankfort School District 157-C and Lincoln-Way High School District 210 partnered to host the New York Times bestselling author of “How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success.”
Lythcott-Haims’ talk warned parents against over-parenting, over-directing or over-managing their children’s lives, and she interspersed her advice with examples from her own experiences as a parent and as a student dean at Stanford University.
She covered themes of love, fear and ego in parenting and discussed technology’s impacts on raising children. She said that, despite the positive benefits of technology in the world today, social media often encourages more competition between parents when it comes to children’s accomplishments, and, for some parents, grade-tracking applications like PowerSchool or Skyward can cause grades to dominate family conversations.
The author challenged parents to do a one-week experiment during which they would not look at their child’s grades online and see how this change impacts their conversations and time spent with their children.
She also encouraged parents to embrace their children’s talents and career interests, teach their children to advocate for themselves and be accountable for their actions, and give their children the freedom to make mistakes.
Lythcott-Haims also encouraged parents to diverge from the listings of U.S. News & World Report to look into smaller schools and community colleges with their children.
Following her talk, Lythcott-Haims took questions from members of the audience and signed copies of her book.