Do you and your partner always end in a Mexican Stand off when it comes to your children?
Back on Track have been seeing a reoccurring theme when conducting our in home consultations.
“My partner and I can’t seem to agree on how to raise our children and it always ends in one of use storming off in a huff which then leads to a Mexican stand off!”
This is not just about discipline, mealtimes and behaviour, it also occurs when discussing treats, extra circular activities and which schools to send their children too!
I would like to share some of the tips and strategies the Back on Track team use when these discussions come up with families during our consultations.
Firstly, you need to have a united front when discussing situations in front or with your children, always support each other. You may not agree with your partner but in front of the kids you do, otherwise the children will see the crack in slip right in and have bargaining power, especially when it comes to rules and discipline. We all know those kids who ask a parent a question and if they don’t get the answer they want they ask the other.
If you disagree talk about it later, away from the children in a calm and friendly manner and agree on a plan and then move forward.
Secondly, if you strongly disagree with the way a situation is going and you don’t think you can support your partner….Walk away, before you say something that is going to create an argument. Defuse the situation and allow your partner to finish with the situation. Again, make time later to discuss the situation and agree on a plan for next time the situation arises.
Thirdly, make time once a month to have a chat about how things are going. Make it a date and get a babysitter and head out for dinner or even a coffee and nut out how everything is going.
Be honest, agree on a plan and support each other.
Always, be consistent with your children. Children are very clever at playing one parent off against the other. Always support what you have both agreed on. Playing good cop bad cop is not the best way to parent. If you are unsure what you would like to do in a situation tell your child that you cannot answer that just yet I need to discuss it with your Mum/Dad and maintain that united front.
Lastly, when it comes to discipline and routine it is important that everyone is consistent. Children thrive on routine and boundaries and feel safe knowing they are in place. If children know what to expect their behaviour is mostly good. However when they feel unsure and unsafe about things they tend to act out. So be consistent in your routines and discipline and your children’s behaviour will reflect this.
Never discuss issues or argue in front of your children
Always support each other
Always agree on a plan moving forward
Be on the same page
Offer strong routine
Be consistent in your discipline