How Does Your Child Perceive You?
When it comes to your child's perception of you, there are two continuums that matter most: Affiliation and Authority
Affiliation is the level of connectedness you have with your child. If you are high in "affiliation" then you are highly connected to your child, both physically and emotionally. Parents with low affiliation tend to be somewhat distant and/or indifferent.
Authority is the ability you have to get your child to follow your rules and directions. If you have high "authority" then you likely have a child that listens to you and that follows your rules. Parents with low authority tend to be apprehensive and/or ineffective.
Parents can be high or low in affiliation and they can be high or low when it comes to authority. Obviously, they can also fall anywhere in-between with regards to each of these qualities.
Now that we have pointed out each of these continuums, let's look at how they affect your child's perception of you:
If you are high in affiliation but low in authority then your child might perceive you as more of a friend (or even as a sibling) than as a parent.
If you are low in affiliation but high in authority then your child might perceive you as more of a police officer or drill sergeant than as a parent.
If you are low in affiliation and low in authority then your child might perceive you as more of a roommate or as more of a "casual observer" than as a parent.
If you are high in affiliation and high in authority then your child will likely perceive you as a highly-involved and highly-effective parent.
Obviously, parents should strive to be high in both affiliation AND authority. If you can achieve a relatively high level of each of these qualities then you are doing your job as a parent quite well!