Germany/parenting in Germany
What is the parenting roles in Germany?
you made the mistake of asking a lawyer :-) so I will first point you towards the child custody law in Germany: http://andreasmoser.wordpress.com/2012/09/19/10-faq-child-custody-law-germany/
Then I'll have to point out that I am not a parent myself, so my experience is based on my own upbringing and on what I have observed. As I have observed a great many parents in and outside of Germany, I will try to focus on the differences.
You want your child to be happy. That's more important than being successful. In Germany, it's absolutely OK to be relaxed about your child even if he or she has to repeat a class at school or doesn't get accepted by university. Happiness and character (politeness, honesty, integrity, compassion) are what counts.
Parents are of course supportive, like everywhere, but children are also expected to become independent. For example I always found it funny when I saw that parents take their children to school in other countries. In Germany, I walked to kindergarten myself when I was 4. When I went to school, my parents came the first day and that was it.
Also, I think generally children have quite some freedom. They are not expected to call their parents every hour. Many parents would not worry too much if the child is out playing in the forest all day. Once the children become teenagers, they are almost treated like young adults (if their personality is mature enough of course).
I hope that helped a bit, but please feel free to follow up with more specific questions.