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Parenting styles - what if you and partner disagree

(7 Posts)
junkyardgyp Sat 09-Nov-13 20:38:31

My partner tells me I am too soft, I believe in positive reinforcement etc, try not to shout, be calm, explain but kids are all too often kids and bloody annoying. He seems to think our eldest in particular (7) doesn't listen to him and is rude and disobedient and she needs to learn. He is lovely lots of the time, hands on all the rest but he shouts, he has little patience, he goes on and on at them, giving no space for kids to process info. He talks negatively about them to me in front of them. I hate this, he says they need to know and honesty is important. He expects instant results. I am at end of my tether, don't know what to do feel like the gap in our parenting styles is just too big. Anyone else feel like this? Any advice?? Help sad((

lifesobeautiful Sat 09-Nov-13 22:02:20

Oh difficult situation - and I think quite a common one. Personally I think there's room for both types of parenting. Your lovely soft style, and his more firm, possibly old-fashioned one. I don't think there's anything wrong with a child being shouted at occasionally - they do need to learn that not everyone will always be soft and patient with them as they get older and enter the adult world.

(My mum suggested this to me a couple of months ago when an uncle of mine shouted at my DS after he'd asked him repeatedly not to spray him with water. I was really upset, but actually my DS still adores him and really looks up to him.)

However I wouldn't like it if my DH spoke negatively about the DC in front of them. Perhaps you could say that there are many things you think he's good at on the dad front - the hands on stuff, and you don't mind the odd bit of shouting, but that he could perhaps cut down on the speaking negatively part? And that he should respect your type of parenting, and that you will try to respect his.

Praise and then gentle criticism or suggestion... usually works on my DH!

cory Sun 10-Nov-13 12:23:25

Could you manage a mix of partly meeting each other halfway and partly, as lifesobeatiful says, accepting your different parenting styles?

If he agrees to cut down on negative comments, maybe you could help him more with enforcing obedience?

In our family, dh was the soft and gentle one. It was lovely in many ways, but it also made my work twice as hard. I always ended up as bad cop. Even when dh did give commands they used to simply not obey him because they didn't believe he had the energy to enforce them. (So guess who had to rally round and do his work for him?)

It is easier now that they are teenagers and do most of their own commanding. They are close to both of us, but funnily enough they don't love me any less than dh. And in an emergency they will turn to me, because they trust my strength, however much they may grumble about my strictness. I think we have been good for each other: dh has learnt that discipline is a household task like any other: if you don't do the dishes, somebody else will have to. I have learnt that it's not the end of the world if you sometimes cut somebody a bit of slack and that older dc are quite capable of both regarding their parents' foibles with tolerant amusement and loving and respecting them at the same time.

junkyardgyp Sun 17-Nov-13 18:54:43

Thanks for your comments. Balance is a good philosophy.

KatyN Tue 19-Nov-13 13:14:24

If we disagree, we argue about it when our son has gone to bed. we have had some pretty big disagreements.

because we agree that we should be consistent we just battle it out until we find a comprimise. It's rubbish!!! all hell would break loose if one of us went back on our word!

(for example when my son was learning to self soothe my dh wanted to leave him for 5/10/70000million minutes to cry - I said that was ridiculous and anymore than 2 minutes was cruel. We agreed on 3.5 minutes. Timed with a stop watch!!)


PurpleDana Tue 19-Nov-13 17:05:25

My husband and I have only been together for 4yrs & have children from previous marriages, my son is 19 & his 2 boys are 14 & 11. We now have a 3 month old daughter together.
We have completely different parenting styles! I am quite firm & talk things through, he is soft & his kids get away with murder! It has caused loads of problems and such a divide. I am dreading the years of parenthood we have ahead for the amount of disagreeing I know are to come :-(

PurpleDana Tue 19-Nov-13 17:08:41

By the way, we did discuss all this before deciding to try for a baby! We decided we just had to talk to each other a lot, don't undermine each other, learn to compromise, and cross our fingers it works ok. Eek...

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