In the matter of parenting styles, some of the most popular options are from: Denmark (where both parents and kids are supposedly very happy), Germany (where children are encouraged to play with fire), or France (where children are allegedly better behaved). But why is England generally kept out of the leading team? This seems unfair since the Brits have some useful parenting tips to provide to the rest of the world and some comparison may be worth it. Of course, most of British parenting methods are quite different than those you would find in American parenting handbooks. Here are a few examples:

  1. In the UK, mothers can get up to 52 weeks of maternity leave, a lot more than in the US, where some working moms are not even sure to get a single day of leave.
  2. Using full language as a kid in American families is strongly discouraged, while this kind of behavior is not a big deal in the UK.
  3. It is not out of the ordinary to see kids running around in a British pub. A good way to spare a babysitter.
  4. In the UK, by the age of 13, kids are entitled to sign up for a program through the National Health Service (NHS), that allow them to get free condoms. The birds and the bees talk start much sooner in the UK than in the US. Probably not a bad move since the United Kingdom has halved its teen pregnancy rate during the two previous decades.
  5. Last but not least, even if spanking is less and less tolerated in the US, it’s even more frowned upon in the UK. A spank, or even a smack on the hand, makes a lot of parents horrified over there.

Families on both sides of the pond do things a little differently - Chris Jackson-Mark Davis-Getty Images

Families on both sides of the pond do things a little differently (Chris Jackson/Mark Davis/Getty Images)