Am I a Snow Plow Parent? 7 Modern Parenting Terms

The GypsyNesters

This glossary of modern parenting terms from around the world provides a cautionary tale through definitions.

Could a Snow Plow Parent accidentally raise a Kidult in a perpetual state of Adultescence?

Snow Plow Parents
Like the snow removal apparatus, a Snow Plow Parent will be sure to clear the path ahead, ensuring nothing will challenge their children’s happiness.

Creating an obstacle-free world allows their child to dodge all the pitfalls and challenges that are necessary for molding responsible, competent adults.

Helicopter Parents 
Veronica considers herself a recovering Helicopter Mommy, so we know all about these guys. Helicopter Parents hover over every aspect of their children’s lives, micromanaging every move they make. From arranging highly-scripted toddler playdates to writing their college-aged spawn‘s term papers, the Helicopter whirlybird is ever present.

Also known as Hovering Mothers, Smothers

Boomerang “Kids”
Like the Australian hunting stick, Boomerang Kids return to the place they’ve been thrown from. Initially the term described kids returning home after being away at college, but has broadened to any able-bodied adult offspring who lives with his/her parents. We do, however, have some tips for nudging them from the nest!

Also known as Parasite Singles in Japan, Bamboccioni (Big Babies) in Italy, Nesthockers in Germany (referring to birds with their mouths open, waiting for Mommy to feed them) and Basement Dwellers

Parasite “Kids” 
The Boomeranger returns home to rely on its host for room, board and Mama’s cooking, but the Parasite “Kid” will eventually kill its host by latching on and sucking the nest egg dry while living on its own. It’s long-distance leeching, in a manner of speaking. These bloodsuckers have gotten it into their heads that their parents’ job of funding them never ends.

Also known as KIPPERS (Kids In Parents’ Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings) in England and Australia, and Trustafarians (kids living on parents’ trusts whilst dressing up and pretending to be Rastafarians) in The Virgin Islands

Hotel Mama
A place the Boomerang “Kid” calls home in Germany. Comes with parental housekeeping.

Neither kid nor adult, or possibly both kid and adult. A new life phase between the teen years and true adulthood, the Kidult has a few more years to mess around, avoid a real job and all the pesky life lessons of one’s early twenties. It’s basically an extension of the teen years with the ability to legally drink. What could possibly go wrong?

Also known as Twixters.
Similar: NEETs (Not in Education, Employment or Training) in England, Ni-Nis (ni trabaja, ni estudia — neither work nor study) in Spain and Mexico

The Kidult’s state of being.

David & Veronica,

YOUR TURN: Were any of these terms new to you? Do you have others to share? Fire away!

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20 thoughts on “Am I a Snow Plow Parent? 7 Modern Parenting Terms”

  1. Hello! Would you mind if I share your blog with my myspace group?
    There’s a lot of people that I think would really enjoy your content.
    Please let me know. Thanks

  2. This is really interesting, You’re a very skilled blogger. I have joined your feed and look forward to seeking more of your magnificent post. Also, I have shared your web site in my social networks!

  3. Hello guys! Long time no see. I have been gone from your site for so long and I still love you lots.

    Some of these terms are hilarious! Some are new to me but some are near and dear. LOL!

    You rock!

  4. Nope, not claiming a one, although we’ve got ’em all over the friends and family spectrum. They all think we’re mean and selfish parents. I call it laissez faire. Things always sound better in French. 😉

  5. Love the description of kidult!! What could go wrong?? Copious amounts of alcohol whilst attempting to mature into a real, productive adult!!
    We need parenting classes for completing the task vs caring for them as infants!
    I’m seeing public service announcements and billboards in your future!!

  6. Who knew? I did recognize these people though and I may have been guilty of being all of them when I raised my children…I was a stay at home mother doing the best I could. Sigh!

  7. Some terms were def new to me, but I am pleased to say, so far, the hubby and I do not fit into any of these parental pools! I do admit, I have my moments of “snow-plow” parenting because I am OBSESSED with my kids avoiding the pitfalls I did. Funny, they seem to find their own pits just fine! 2 are in college and 2 in high school, so I am “Almost” and empty nester. I LOVE reading your site because it gives hope to the weary parents as well as clearly defined labels of what NOT to do!!!

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