On one hand, we have Helicopter Hoverer Parents of Speshal Snoflakes. HHPOSS never let their preshus dumplins fail or feel any sort of discomfort, however fleeting. What Preshus wants, Preshus gets. They live in Crazytown, where once you've created another person you cease to matter at all, and all your energy and passion and focus must be channeled into this new being who is unique and special (you know, just like everyone else). They're set up for real failure because they weren't allowed to have mini-failures. Mumsy never let them forget to bring their homework back to school--she put it in that backpack herself, like a good mother should! Their projects were always the best--because mom & dad were working on them long after they went to bed. Mom & Dad shielded them from the real world, making sure they thought that everything was Disneyland, all the time. If there were problems or issues they were always hidden from the Snoflakes. No learning to overcome adversity for you, ya li'l Flake! These Speshal Snoflakes grow up to really believe that the world revolves around them, and God help them because it totally does not.
The other extreme is probably worse. The other kind are their kids' best friend. Guess what? You cannot be in charge of another person AND be their best friend. Ever been a manager? Were you bestest friends with your employees? How'd that work out for ya? Friendly is fine. Friendly is wonderful. But confiding too much info to your kids and treating them like fully functioning adults is not fair to them or you. Confide your problems with your marriage in your kids and they lay awake at night and worry about what is going to happen to Mom and Dad and eat a hole in their guts. Comments that seem casual and offhand to you might grow into "OMG THEY ARE GETTING A DIVORCE" to your kid.
Treating kids like confidants is so not cool. They need to view you as The Adult. Someone has to be in charge and guess what, it's you. As kids get up into the middle and high school years this gets even more important. AND HOW. Does your best friend tell you what you're allowed to do or not allowed to do? Thought not. If you didn't lay the foundation of Authoritah when they were smaller than you, God help you now that they're bigger than you.