What's an Elephant Mom?

This was a new mother label for me… An Elephant Mom? At first I thought it was a joke about a mom who never lost her baby weight, but no, an Elephant Mom is a real thing - she's an Indian mother who allows her very young babies to be completely unbridled.

The Elephant Mom doesn’t discipline or even raise her voice to a child before his 5th birthday. These children never have time-outs and they can sleep with their parents in their bed without question.  When they cry, someone always consoles them immediately.

By giving young children the freedom to play and be free, Elephant Moms believe that it is her job to nurture, protect, and encourage her children. They believe that it is their job to protect their children from pain because they’ll have plenty of pain and suffering to deal with when they grow up. Why make a 4-year old child tie his shoes when he’ll have the rest of his life to tie his own shoes?

While infants and toddlers need the Elephant Mom’s devotion, preschool-aged children can benefit from learning how to communicate and share with other kids and adults, which requires understanding rules and adhering to socially-acceptable behavior. Children like to know what is expected of them and if there are no rules, they may act out to see when an older child or adult will step in to stop their behavior. There is a place for Elephant Moms in early child development, but certainly not all the way up to age 5.