2023 Author: Anita Thornton | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-22 03:30
The growing number of young people suffering from burnout, performance anxiety and depression raises concerns. Hypereducation has been a hot topic for a few years now.
We wanted to take stock with Stéphanie Deslauriers, psychoeducator and author of several books, including the most recent The happiness of being an imperfect parent.
What is hypereducation?
The phenomenon of hypereducation is increasingly widespread and can be explained by parents who, often unconsciously, overstimulate their children and demand a high level of performance from them. Between school, sports and recreational activities, the child has no free time. This desire is initiated by the parents who often want more than the child himself.
“Parents often tend to fill their children’s schedule as they do their own,” explains Stéphanie Deslauriers. "Still, it's not necessary to do the same," she adds.
The latter often do this out of performance anxiety. Their child's success is a way for them to reassure themselves that they are doing a good job as parents. " Theparents put a lot on their shoulders and don't want to make mistakes," says the psychoeducator. “I observe a lot of judgment between parents. When we say that a child is badly brought up, we quickly put the blame on the parent. »
She reminds us that throughout the week, at daycare or at school, the child's time is structured down to the minute. There is no room for improvisation. So when the weekend rolls around, there's nothing wrong with doing nothing.
“Parents need to absolve themselves of not always being in play and entertainment mode with their children. Going to the grocery store or doing the housework, these are tasks that are part of life and it is good to involve them in this,”says the mother.
“Learning to do nothing and being bored helps children develop autonomy and a certain resourcefulness. It allows him to find out what he really likes,” she comments.
How do you know when it's too much?
When the will of the parent is greater than that of the child, it is a first sign. Their interests must be respected first and foremost. If the child no longer enjoys an activity, do not push him. You have to listen to the signals and don't hesitate to ask him about his interest in practicing a particular sport or playing a particular musical instrument.
If doing their activities has an impact on the rest of the family and you feel that you are neglecting another child because of the other's activity,maybe it's too addictive. If the child finishes homework or sports very late at night and sleep time is compromised, that's too much. The energy of children is not an inexhaustible resource. According to the psychoeducator, practicing a sport twice a week is enough for the majority of young people.
Manifestations in children
Hypereducation can manifest as a loss of motivation or a sudden change in behavior. If you tell yourself at some point that you don't recognize your child, that's a warning sign.
As parents, these signs should be taken very seriously. If your child complains of headaches, stomach aches or vomiting at times, it is probably because he is under too much stress.
Sometimes the child can hide his stress because he doesn't want to displease his parents. "A child that is too perfect, for me, hides something," says Stéphanie Deslauriers. “A child who never questions his parents, who never opposes instructions, is not normal. It's part of their development. »
Open the discussion with them to find out if this or that activity makes them really happy and ask yourself if this is their desire or yours. Parental awareness is the first step in helping their child.