Italian Parenting Styles: A Deeper Insight Into Raising Kids In Italy [Explained!]

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Italy has always been an attraction for people who are planning on relocating. However, people with children are often stressed over how to raise them after moving to Italy. We understand if you are struggling with it as well.

Parenting in Italy is much different than in other countries. For instance, Italy has a culture where public breastfeeding is normalized. Moreover, they are not bothered by tantrums at all.

However, you will need more than just this to fully understand the parenting norms of Italy. This article has all the things that you need to know!

So, let’s discuss Italian Parenting Styles and review the best ways to raise kids in Italy.

4 Unique Parenting Norms In Italy

Italian parents are very strongly knitted with their children. This is demonstrated by the way they pick names to how they prioritize their children. To get a better sense of this, check out this list of popular Italian names for a girl. 

Parenting norms in Italy are very different from other places. Especially if you’re from the USA, you’ll find numerous differences here. If Italy is where you want to move to, you must know about some parenting norms.

Parenthood never comes with a user manual, no matter where you are. But different places look at parenting differently. 

Here we will be discussing four unique parenting norms that are native to Italy. Let’s dive in!

  • Italian Parents Are Never Bothered by Tantrums! 

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Most American parents try to intervene in any sort of temper tantrums ASAP. The unstated idea is that allowing our children to weep and wail in public is unpleasant.

We feel obligated to help them if they become upset, angry, or overwhelmed and throw tantrums. Have you ever attempted to pacify a screaming kid? You were probably sweating out of pressure to avoid the outraged eyes. 

This commitment is not felt by Italian parents. They don’t feel the necessity to intervene and ignore the whole thing altogether.

Parents in Italy do not have to explain what their children are doing whatsoever. Children are what they are. They aren’t an annoyance and don’t get in the way. When emotions run high, and they will, parents usually ignore them and just go about their normal business.

American parents may find this mentality to be the most difficult to embrace. Most believe that they must regulate their kid’s attitude so that it does not upset others. 

  • You Can Breastfeed Anywhere You Want!
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Public breastfeeding was not made legal in every state of the United States until 2018. Italians would literally be outraged if they were not allowed to do this.

In Italy, breastfeeding in public places is completely natural and expected. People would barely even notice something like this. 

Literally, no one will look at you. At most, you could expect an occasional pleasant nod from a grandma who’s just passing by! 

Unlike in the United States, breastfeeding here is a completely normal thing. Italians do not consider it disrespectful if they see mothers breastfeeding in public places. In fact, they actually approve of it.

It’s true that Americans have worked on changing their views on this matter in recent times. However, it still falls short of Italian norms. In reality, most of Europe has the same mindset as Italy.

So get used to this if you plan on moving to Italy. The country is not just one with amazing winters but one with incredible culture shock too! And the same goes for traveling anywhere in Europe. 

  • The Word “Bedtime” Doesn’t Exist! 

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Google will get you millions of results when you search for “training babies for bedtime.” Well, those are definitely not written by Italians! 

In Italy, the concept of rigorous sleep routines and practices is non-existent. It is kind of a British and American idea. 

Bedtimes are not inherent to the Italian parenting norms at all. Therefore, you can forget about them when you are raising kids in Italy. 

Parents won’t get disapproving stares from others if they keep their kids up late. This does not bother Italian families at all.

If you go to an Italian restaurant, you’ll often find parents with children there even late at night. You may see them sleeping on the lap of their parents. Their parents will literally be indifferent to it and talk over a glass of wine. 

They let children roam around the restaurant and explore their surroundings to fight boredom. For all you know, they could literally clamber up on the lap of a total stranger. Even the stranger will not be bothered by it a bit!

  • Most Children End Up Living with Their Parents!
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Families in Italy are known for their intimacy, and Italian parents are known for having close relationships with their kids even into adulthood. 

This could be one of the reasons why more kids in Italy end up living with their parents compared to other countries.

Many Italian families tend to divide their enormous family houses into flats for their grown children. Sometimes they even get separate kitchens and living spaces.

Since the 2008 financial crisis, the number of young people living with their parents has decreased across Europe. However, Italy defies the pattern completely. Almost half of the population aged between 25 to 34 live with their parents.

These features are what set parenting in Italy apart from other nations. They may seem absurd to some people. But everyone knows how well-behaved Italian children are known to be!

The bonding in Italian families is amazing! You’d often see families with grown-up children going on day trips in Rome.

Is It Expensive to Raise Kids in Italy?

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Family is the cornerstone of Italian culture, but it also serves as an imbalanced economic buffer. 

Researchers believe that this could be the reason for things like youth employment. That’s not all! It may even actively enable the declining birth rate that Italy has going on.

It’s only natural for Italian parents to shell out large amounts of money to support their kids. They save to assist them through their adolescence and even adulthood.

According to data from ONF, raising a kid in Italy can cost around €320,000. Even when they are 18! 

Final Words

Hopefully, whatever queries or confusion you had about Italian Parenting Styles has been cleared up at least to some extent. As you saw, the Italians have a pretty unique parenting style that has its pros and cons. 

For instance, you should not let it travel too far. Always remember to intervene if your children are being mean to other kids.

We will be publishing more information on parenting in Italy and elsewhere in the coming days. Till then, happy parenting!

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