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Parenting from the same songsheet

22 July
Posted by:
Michael Grose
Kids love the certainty that consistency between parents provides. So do parents

Working together doesn’t mean that you and your partner do everything exactly the same way.

It's inevitable that  there are individual differences – fun parent/family ogre, strict/lenient.!

Working together means more agreement to having a joint approach or a position around a range of common issues, such as:

1. Acceptable standards of individual behaviour – How should our kids behave when they go out?

2. The Discipline approach you use – what to do when don’t behave. Strict or lenient. act or talk. Consequences or punishment.

3. Agreement about granting more freedom, particularly around firsts – first mobile phone, first time to go out to a movie on own.

4. Tricky personal issues such as how to parent when a child goes through a rough patch, perhaps a child has a particular condition or learning difficulty.

5. Current issues such as use of Facebook, mobile phones.

6. Teenagers and risk-taking. Develop joint positions around such things as curfews, parties, alcohol, sexuality, homework, friendships and going out.

7. Supporting your partner’s approach. You may not entirely agree with your partner's view but if it s safe and respectful then support is the best option.

8. Supporting your partner’s relationship with your kids. Even though you may disagree with something yoru partner does, you need to support his or her relationship with children.

Kids see through divisiveness between parents and will use it to their advantage. Similarly points-scoring between parents inevitably brings grief as well.

Tips for getting on the same page as your partner:

1. Bring partner into issues if they are reluctant. Defer to your other partner if you can't answer kids queries or they pester you for greater independence.

2. Keep partner informed about kids' behaviour, well-being and about their social life. Keep bring them into the parenting loop.

3. Get used to asking for your partner’s opinion about all sorts of challenges and parenting quandaries. " Do you think we should allow our son to go to the party?"

4. Hold regulay family meetings when kids are in the five to eight year age group. It's a formal but easy way for parents to get on the same page.
  • consistency
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