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Stress Buster # 4 - Are You Parenting on the Same Page?

Stress Buster # 4

Are You Parenting on the Same Page?

“Would you please change your tone of voice?” Andrea pleads.

“He is not doing his chores like I asked him,” defends Jason.

“You are being way too hard on him!” argues Andrea.

“And you treat him like a baby. You are way to overprotective!”

“Oh my gosh, you can be so pig headed sometimes!” Andrea storms off in a huff. 

A silent battle continues for hours.

Most couples differ at times when it comes to discipline. For example, parents often disagree on when to intervene with a behavior. One parent may believe that a child should not be given reminders if they don't do their chores on time. 

The other parent, however, may believe that children should be given extra chances. What happens too often is that the discipline problem (what the child did or didn't do) gets pushed aside, and a new problem arises: marital or partner discord.

A whopping 75% of married people

feel that they frequently settle. 

As relationships progress, settling becomes a pattern. We often settle when we are afraid of conflict. Settling, we think will keep the peace. When you settle, your marriage becomes stale and unsatisfying. Settling can make you feel resentful. Tension and stress build in the relationship and this trickles down into the whole family.

In the beginning of the relationship, you put “your best face forward.” You innovated and spent time thinking of ways to make your partner happy. Are you still doing those things? Here are some do’s and don'ts to help you put “your best face forward,” avoid settling in your relationship and help you come to agreement in your discipline.

  • Use humor. It is hard to get defensive or snarky when your spouse uses humor. For example, my husband left the water faucet dripping for the umpteenth time. Instead of being a nag, I acted like an exaggerated version of Vana White. We both broke out laughing and he turned off the faucet.

 It takes a little more time and energy to use humor, but it will increase your odds of winning his/her cooperation.

  • Ask for permission before discussing delicate conversations. Asking for permission is respectful of your partner’s time. They may be in the middle of something they deem to be important. Asking for permission allows them to prepare mentally for the conversation. In this way, they don’t feel “blindsided” which only makes them defensive.

  • Talk about what is right for the child. Not who is right. Being right often takes priority over being close. Being right usually doesn’t solve the problem but instead deepens the wedge between you. Ask yourself,

“Would I rather be right


would I rather be close?”

  • Arrange to get your needs met from each other. When one partner doesn’t get their needs met from their partner, they may attempt to get their needs met through their child. This undermines the intimacy in your relationship.

  • Seek to understand first. Feeling heard and understood makes it safe to have difficult conversations. Start your conversation by asking your partner questions out of curiosity not judgement.

  • Let your child see you work through conflict with win/win outcomes. This provides a model for your child to aspire to in their relationships. In addition:

Feeling like your spouse wants you to win

 increases trust and intimacy in the relationship.

  • Ask their advice instead of telling your partner what they should or should not be doing. This creates teamwork as opposed to one-up-man-ship.

  • Don’t take your child side against your partner. This puts the child in a precarious position because he may feel he needs to take sides. It addition, it teaches the child that he can divide and conquer you.

  • Agree to disagree. We can't agree with our partner all the time. But when we can't, it is important that we respect the way the other one feels. We can disagree and stop the bickering about the the issue.

For example, my husband was a health nut and didn't want our kids to have any sugar at all. I was more lenient and let the kids have sugar on occasion. This discrepancy led to many arguments. One day, we decided to stop making each other wrong and agreed to disagree. What a relief that was!

  • Above all else, make your relationship a priority. Children and work often become the priority resulting in less connection. Your partnership is like the glue of the family. When it gets watered down, tension builds in the family. One has to work hard to not let this happen.

A couple of ways to do this are to wake up with the question,

 “How can I make a meaningful connection with my partner this morning?

 Or asking your partner:

“How can I best support you today?”

Relationships can be challenging. You can’t always be on the same page when parenting. However, learning to keep “your best face forward,” will help you feel better about yourself, increase the intimacy you share, and decrease the amount of stress your family will experience.

Parenting Practice: Choose one of the above tips that resonated with you and try it for a week. Then head on over to our Facebook page and share your results and get ideas from the results of others.

If your family is ready to understand how to be free of the worry boss, and have a more peaceful, fun, and adventurous life, please jump in and sign up for this course.


The new edition of the "Redirecting Children's Behavior" book is now out! Click here to order your copy on Amazon or Kindle.There are a ton of new materials to help you discipline in a way that connects you and your child during an altercation. Wouldn't you rather that than you and your child walking away feeling empty, frustrated or angry?


If this message today spoke to you today, share with me or your friends how it affected you and follow us on our social media!

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