There are plenty of single parents who make the situation work. However, most individuals would agree that if you’ve got a partner or spouse, that makes the parenting duties easier. You might feel overwhelmed on your own, but if you have someone by your side who can help support you, the process will probably go a lot smoother.
Sometimes, though, you and your partner or spouse might run into problems if you can’t agree on a particular parenting technique. Maybe you’re reaching the point where you’re fighting about how to raise your kids.
How to Agree Regarding Parenting Techniques
No one in the family will enjoy these situations. Both the parents and the child are likely to feel stressed if there are no clear-cut parenting guidelines regarding different situations.
Let’s talk about how you and your fellow parent can get on the same page with your child-rearing techniques.
Identify Problem Areas
The chances are high that you and your partner or spouse can agree on most child-rearing ideas. A lot of raising a child is self-explanatory.
For instance, parents probably don’t argue about giving the child baby formula or using a seatbelt to secure a youngster who has outgrown their car seat. Seatbelts reduce injuries and deaths by 50%, so you’re not liable to fight about something so fundamental.
Probably, there are only a few particular areas where you disagree. You should identify them so you can talk about them. Sit down and discuss them rationally and see if one or the other of you are willing to change your minds and defer to the other person’s judgment.
Use Research to See Which Is the Better Way
Maybe you’re arguing about something like whether breastfeeding the child is a good idea. Some parents also can’t agree about whether to spank a child if they misbehave.
Whatever the contention point, it often helps if you try to develop some research that establishes whether the experts agree with one of you or the other. There are very few parenting issues that various entities and individuals have not researched. There are thousands of parenting books and articles out there, and whatever it is you can’t agree on, the experts have likely weighed in on it already.
You should try only to use reputable resources, though. Let’s say you find some article online that says that you should deal with a particular parenting issue in a certain way. Pay attention to whether it’s some uneducated social media influencer who wrote it or whether it was a medical doctor with an extensive child psychology background.
Seek Counseling if Necessary
Maybe you’re arguing about how to raise a child so much that it has become your relationship or marriage’s central friction point. If you’re sleeping in separate beds and you’re always mad at each other because you can’t seem to agree, it’s probably time to seek professional help. You don’t want these contention points to break the two of you up.
You might talk to a therapist together who specializes in these sorts of issues. They can help you stop arguing, but they can also weigh in on the particular contention areas. This way, you have some expert advice you can hopefully both agree to follow.
This counseling can help young parents who are struggling with their first child. Maybe, if you have other children, you won’t have any issues because you’ve been through this before. You’ll know how to handle the various child-rearing situations that arise.
Present a United Front
One of the reasons it matters so much that you agree on raising a child is that if one of you tells the child something, and the other one says something completely different, that’s going to confuse them. If that happens, it’s almost like you’re forcing the youngster to choose between their two parents or guardians. That’s cruel, so you don’t want ever to do it.
When you can agree on conducting yourself in each child-rearing situation, you’re giving the child the same answer every time. That way, they might not always like what you have to say, but at least you’re working as a unit. The child will respect that and follow your instructions a lot better if they can see that you agree on whatever the issue is.
If Necessary, Move on from Each Other
In a few rare instances, you might have a situation where one parent wants to raise the child one way, but the other parent or guardian has an entirely different idea. Maybe one parent insists on making the child do chores at a young age, and the other is against it. Perhaps one parent wants to raise the child according to certain religious doctrines, and the other one does not.
If you have tried everything to get on the same page with each other, and you still can’t do it, it could be that you will have to go your separate ways. Remember that you’re raising a human being, and if all they see during their formative years is two parents fighting right in front of them, that’s going to damage their fragile psyche.
If you can’t agree on how to raise a child, that might be the final straw that breaks the two of you up. You can separate or divorce, and either one or the other of you can get custody. You might also share custody, and the child can be with one of you one week and the other the following week.
That’s seldom ideal for the child, but each of you can lay down your own household rules at least in that scenario. The child will understand that there are some things one parent will allow, but the other one will not.
Raising a child is never easy, but you need to come to some understanding if you’re going to move forward, either as a family or separately.