Is it me (and I know this is a one sided account.....)(18 Posts)
My partner and I have different approaches to setting boundaries and managing behaviour ( 4 children, 16, 11, 10 and 8).
I feel driven to desperation and over time I have become quickly bad tempered and shouty because I am a one man band when it comes to discipline. Not only that, I feel openly undermined and unsupported.
For example ..... We were both coming home last week in the car - pulling up outsde we could see the 16 year old skateboarding in the living room and jumping up and down as he was trying to do tricks - flipping the skateboard. I said - here's a chance for you to tell him off rather than me having to do it. The reponse was "is he doing any harm - does it matter if he skateboards in the living room?" TBH how can you repond to something like that ... umm making carpets dirty, smashing TV, smashing aquarium, damaging furniture - but TBH why would this need explaining? Does anyone anywhere on planet Earth think it's ok for a 16 year old to skateboard in their normal sized living room?
I insisted that I not be the one to deal with it and it be addressed by my partner. The actuality?
"Stop skateboarding in the living room and go and do it in the kitchen".
Is it me? is it really me? How is it OK to skateboard in the kitchen? Surely the response is something along the lines of - stop that, it's unacceptable - never skateboard in the house again or I will confiscate your skateboard for a week.... or something along those lines.
Half term, I'm in a meeting at work (we both work but my partner does not work school holidays) - my partner calls me several times so I answer - partner says: I think 11 year old son has broken 8 year old son's nose - I was upstairs heard shouting and came down and blood was pumping everywhere. 8 year old sobbing desperately in background and wants to talk with me. After talking with 8 year old (bearing in mind I am in a meeting) I say ban 11 year old from the computer. I arrive home - 11 year old is on the computer with a friend who came round. I ask why he is on the computer ...... because he was banned for an hour already. Usually I would come in and say - right, off the computer now - what do you think you were doing hurting your brother like that etc? But I am feeling beaten - 16 years of things like this and I am exhausted by being the baddie / parent all the time. Use your knife and fork properly, cut that up, sit up, stop using your phone at the table, make your bed, pick your clothes up off the floor. Aaaarrrggggggghhh.
I have literally had just had to stop typing and get up because the 11 year old and 8 year old were yelling at eachother - I was 2 room's away.
I have lost track of the number of times children and partner are in the same room and their behaviour is escalating but even though I may be upstairs and they are downstairs my partner appears oblivious. Children jumping up and down on the sofa, partner sittng next to them on Ipad oblivious. etc etc
Anyway just wanted to vent not sure what I expect.
Thanks for listening :-)
He's bloody useless. He wants to be the good guy, doesn't he? He's happy to have them all resent you as long as they love being with him. The archetypal Disney dad.
Why are you with him? You're not a team, far from it. He undermines you and fails to step up and support you at every opportunity. And if this has been going on for 16 years then he's unlikely to change.
Kick him out, tell him to get his own home and he can parent (or not parent as the case may be) however the fuck he wants to every other weekend without your house getting trashed.
Well your husband did tell him to stop skateboarding in the living room and he did ban him from the computer like you asked if you think about it. I can't help thinking it's his way of coping with a house full. He's obviously pretty calm and takes it all in his stride. I don't know. I don't think he's doing anything wrong to be honest but that's just my opinion. You do have different ideas of discipline though, maybe you should have another chat about it?
Oh good grief, he's absolutely hopeless and he's undermining you too.
May I ask, what is your 16 year old's rationale for their frankly childish behaviour?
You have been careful not to give pronouns to your partner which always makes me a bit suspicious of ulterior motives to posting...
But anyway yes you do seem to be the only one setting boundaries
I'm surprised it has taken 16 years for this to come to a head. Your partner needs to step up and discipline the children, but I don't know how you get that to happen....
He’s too busy trying to be their mate - he probably finds that an easier option than actually parenting them. He’s a man child.
And why did he need to phone you at work about the fight? Did you ask him why he felt so incapable of dealing with it?
I agree with the ulterior motives, but it's hard to be kind to a person who thinks children should be able to skateboard in the house.
She's absolutely hopeless in that case.
And I still think your 16 year old should know bloody better.
Well it depends doesn't it? Is he utterly useless and ineffectual? Or is he just really laid back and easy going? Only you know him
Based on what you've said, he sounds ineffectual to me. But I don't know him or the dynamics of your relationship. Are your children badly behaved? What would happen if you didn't wade in sometimes?
Why are you with him? Has he any good qualities?
Yeah you should LTB cos he’s obviously useless....despite the fact that the only one who has a problem is you.....perhaps you just have different parenting styles? The fact he doesn’t do it your way doesn’t mean he’s wrong does it? Who has the better relationship with the kids, you or him?
HollowTalk ulterior motives sometimes include wanting to prove that MNers always think men are in the wrong or other nonsense
Yes, it is true sadly that some people on here want to play 'Gender' Reverse Bingo.
In this case, the parent who is a bit slack is a parent who is a bit slack, and the 16 year old who should know better is a 16 year old who should know better.
I think you need a new approach. You want your partner to parent like you and discipline like you. They don't. So you need to find a way as a family. I'd suggest instead of knee jerk punishments you go down the family meeting route.
Whole family sits down after the nose injury and ask 'what happened? Why did it happen? What are you (DC) going to do about it?' DC then come up with a suitable punishment/restoration.
Ditto the skateboarding.
Consequences are actually much more effective worked out later when emotions are cooler.
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