Vigilant care: An integrative reformulation regarding parental monitoring

Haim Omer, Shai Satran, Oren Driter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Parental monitoring was once considered to be the approved way for preventing risk behaviors by children and adolescents. In the last years, however, the concept has been the target of cogent criticism questioning the interpretation of findings which support the traditional view of monitoring. After reviewing the various criticisms and the resulting fragmentation of theory and practice, we propose the model of vigilant care as an integrative solution. Vigilant care is a flexible framework within which parents adjust their level of involvement to the warning signals they detect. By justifying moves to higher levels of vigilance with safety considerations and expressing their duty to do so in a decided but noncontrolling manner, parents legitimize their increased involvement both to the child and to themselves. The model offers a unified solution to the ongoing controversy and generates theoretical hypotheses as well as a practice-oriented research program.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-304
Number of pages14
JournalPsychological Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2016


  • Parental control
  • Parental knowledge
  • Parental monitoring
  • Parenting
  • Vigilant care


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