Parents are always a sticky problem for young adult writers. Your protagonist can’t have exciting adventures if her parents are continuously blocking her fun – a feeling, I’m sure, many kids relate to. However, sitting in time out doesn’t make for a good story. Unless that story is based at a detention camp where your protagonist has to dig Holes all day. But even, in Louis Sachar’s story Holes, his main character’s parents are MIA for all but the first and final chapters of the book.
The problem with parents as characters is that most parents in real life are buying the book for their children. Most parents don’t like buying books, especially for younger readers, that don’t display parents in a good light. Figuring out how to develop characters that are acceptable to parents, librarians, teachers and other adult figures AND their children and students can be a daunting task.