Partnering in Parenting
Many times we fight with our spouse over parenting our children. Isn’t that strange? Your children are a product of your love. The thing we prayed for, yearned for and dreamed about is the very thing that puts us in conflict with our partner. Maybe it’s their style of discipline you don’t agree with. Or maybe it’s the things they say yes to for your child that you would never agree to. As moms, we often think we know best because we spend more time with the children or because we have seen the backstory to their particular behavior. And if you, as the momma, are the primary caregiver, that is often (not always, but often) true. So how do we communicate our disagreement without undermining our spouse’s authority or creating distance between us as spouses?
It all comes back to our words moms. We need to pay attention to our tone, our words, our attitude. Stop and think, “how is this going to be received?” before speaking. Ask yourself, “is this the best time to bring this up?” “How can I communicate this respectfully so that we can make progress together? Does this need to be said at all?” Remember my post about speaking words that are like honey? We may know more about our children but that doesn’t give us the right to condescend. Not only do we need to be careful how we communicate our disagreement, but we need to remember to praise our spouses as well! If we only ever tell them what they are doing wrong in parenting, we will discourage them from involving themselves in parenting our kids. When you see an interaction between your spouse and your child that warms your heart or encourages you, say something! Speak life into their relationship and encourage your spouse in the ways you see them doing well as a parent.
I always tell moms, you are not in competition with your spouse. You and your spouse are a team, so if one of you is “winning” then the team is losing. When our children see their parents are a united team, they feel secure, whether they like our decisions or not. Work hard to be on the same page with your spouse, you are mightier that way.