I am sorry to say that I have fought with my DH in front of my DCs over the course of a long marriage. ( we are still together after 42 years) I did try hard not to do it when they were small. I knew it was something that would diminish me in their eyes, so I mainly saved my hissing for when they were in bed or out of the vicinity. When they come home for Christmas I will ask them if they remember any of my Drama Queen behaviour. The all grew up to be successful people, good jobs, nice partners, etc, but I suffer from guilt like most parents. IF ONLY I could do it again, knowing what I know now. However, you can't.
Research shows though - that never fighting in front if your children can be equally damaging. As long as you fight "fair" - and resolve the conflict in their sight as well so they can see the compromise / misunderstanding straightened out / whatever, they learn conflict is nothing to be afraid of.
Define 'fight'. All relationships throw up differences of opinion and annoyances. I think showing DCs that you can disagree without getting nasty is part of how they learn about love and life. My parents never argued in front of the children but would have knock down rows when they thought we were asleep.... that was shit, I can tell you
Fight as in no holds barred? No, that would be damaging to everybody. We argue and try to come to some sort of agreement. Obviously, everybody has a different temperament but I found it so awful when we hit a rough patch and fought with unnerving regularity. Don't know how children can make sense of it because I was overwhelmed.
It doesn't happen often but if we disagree we discuss the issue. We wouldn't hide away so the teens would hear us and would hear us both giving our viewpoint. Neither of us shout or blow up, and we always come to some sort of agreement, so I think it is a reasonable example for the teens to see.
We have disagreements in front of my DD. It's normal not to agree with people and she needs to know she's allowed to disagree, and how to do so by listening and debating to reach compromise.
There seems to be a weird general opinion on mumsnet that people can't disagree or express themselves that I couldn't more strongly disagree with. If I couldn't sensibly disagree with anyone then that's my red flag that the relationship isn't a healthy one and I'd not bother with them.
We are struggling not to fight in front of DD - and I'm not talking about a disagreement, but shouting and name calling. She's 4 months now and it has to stop because I desperately don't want her witnessing us slagging each other off. I remember my own parents fighting and it is gut wrenching for a child to witness.
No. DW and I both have short fuses. We fought whether dcs were there or not. Felt it was better that they see this rather than we papered over the cracks and tried to play happy families. Always made sure that they saw we loved each other and it was nothing to get unhappy about . Been married for 36 years now.
Honestly? Practice. I started by stepping outside and breathing, waiting for the rage to subside. I read about how to get my point across politely and assertively, and practiced in the mirror, in my head, any time I had any point to make. If I knew I was going to go into a situation that would ordinarily make me lose it, I prepared. I came up with scripts and followed them as best I could. Sometimes, I'd say "I don't want to lose my temper so I'm going to go to my room and calm down." (Or outside, whatever)
I thought a lot about the damage my temper did, how I lost friends, how my relationship with mum was up and down etc.
Some of it is simply deciding that I Will Not Lose My Temper. Sometimes it's barely contained, but I find asking "is this worth it?" Helps. I'm a much nicer person now I'm not so angry, I think, and I find if I don't shout and scream, they don't shout and scream either.
This doesn't mean I don't get angry- it means I am angry, but totally in control.
I slipped a lot. Like I said, it's taken the best part of a decade, from about 15 to now, to see a wall covered in marker and not have a red mist moment.
Sorry if that's really stilted, I'm on my phone. Hope it helps a bit.
I knew this was going to descend into a " we don't fight we just discuss " stealth boast response type thread. You may need to explain OP that you don't literally mean bashing the living day lights out of each other!