One of the biggest challenges in parenting is working together in a way that is unified. These tips can help you find ways to be sure you’re on the same page.
Parenting is rarely simple and making it even more difficult is the fact that each parent may carry different ideals about parenting and what it means to them. If you’ve been around children then you’ll know how quickly they work out which parent is most likely to say yes to their demands in a certain situation. It’s moments like these that can really challenge a family.
The best way to keep your family running smoothly is to work together as parents to set certain standards, expectations and guidelines within your parenting structure. This helps you know how to approach particular situations and helps your children know where they stand at all times.
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How to get on track to work together as parents
As parents, we learn our ideals from how we were parented. For many couples this may be entirely different, resulting in difficulties when trying to figure out your own parenting style and how to align it with that of your partner.
1. Discuss where you stand
There isn’t any other way to know where your partner stands on a subject than to discuss it. Leaving it until you encounter the problem with your children can often be too late and can cause extra chaos. Talk to your partner about topics such as pocket money, schooling, swearing, bed times, sports and activities and punishments you would both consider appropriate in certain situations.
2. Ask the other parent if you’re unsure
If there’s a big parenting issue, or something you sense might be ongoing then don’t rush into a judgement or solution, especially if your children are trying to influence you. Take the time to talk about this together as adults and be sure the outcome is something that suits both of you. This could include issues such as parties and sleepovers or even something like household responsibilities or pet ownership.
3. Create family rules
Having a set of family rules is a great way to keep everyone on the same page. These rules can be as simple as having respect for each other, not yelling or picking up after yourself. For older children they might include curfews, phone usage, chores or anything else that you agree on. Have them printed up onto a decorative hanging, or a simple fridge mounted print, it’s just important that everyone knows they exist.
As parents you won’t always agree on the way things should be with your children. This might include things such as family Christmas traditions, right through to topics such as smacking. It’s important that as parents you compromise on what the solution will be for your family and do this in a manner that is separate from the kids. Don’t let the kids see you arguing over how you will work together as parents, this just encourages the issue of ignoring one parent in order to seek the required answer from the percieved softer parent.
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