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A parent is the first person that comes into contact with a child after birth. The parent has a responsibility of laying the foundation for the child's future. Parenting is therefore as important to a child as the foundation of a building is in determining the strength of that building. The way parents act towards their children directly affects their development- their self-esteem, their confidence levels, their emotional stability, their response to authority, their relationship with others and their performance in any given task.  Although parenting is not the only factor that is contributing to increased cases of juvenile delinquency, it is nevertheless one of the major contributing factors. Therefore "bad parents make bad children" (Moeller 92). This paper is going to look at what constitutes bad parenting and the effects it has on the child's future.

While it may prove difficult to define bad parenting, the following characteristics indicate bad parenting. Being overprotective; such parents micro-manage their children in that they involve themselves with everything their children do. They never give the children room to try things on their own so that they can learn how to solve the problems they face (Delbert 161). Nagging, lecturing children and yelling at a child; such a parent result to nagging their children by repeating the same instructions to them to ensure they obey and when they don't, they yell at them.

Praising the children too much and in the wrong way; such parents are not consistent in giving praise and when they do, they overdo it. The praise they give also turns out to be either generic (you are too good) or focused on the person rather than the act (you are very intelligent). Bad parenting is also manifested by harsh punishment. While it is necessary to discipline children to deter them from bad behavior, being too harsh is counterproductive. It creates a wedge between the parent and the children (Sinclair 30).

Bad parents put the grades ahead of creativity. They focus on showing their children how to read, emphasize on grades at school without training the children how to be creative. They give the children answers to questions without showing them how to arrive at such answers so that next time they can be able to do things for themselves and to question why things are done so. Bad parenting does not also allocate time to have fun with the children (Sinclair 31). These are the major characteristics that describe bad parenting.

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