Tuesday, December 16, 2008

How Do you Co-Parent When There Is A Disagreement?

I have a question I’d like to pose to the masses. What if you had children and you wanted to raise/discipline them in a certain way but their other parent had very different ideas on how things should be done. How do you handle that?

  • You think the kids should have a curfew. The co-parent thinks they should be able to stay out all night.
  • You feel spankings are in order but the co-parent says no way, no how!
  • You want to enroll the kids in extra-curricular activities to expose them to different things but the co-parent is adamant that it’s not necessary.
  • The co-parent is a meat and potatoes person but you are a vegetarian.

If you both are actively raising the children together then the co-parent’s view can’t very well be discarded. How do you navigate these difficult waters?

29 People saying stuff:

moooooog35 said...

You drop the kids off at a Foster home and let those assholes figure it out.

Plus, more free time for you1

It's a win-win!

Queen-Size funny bone said...

curfew during school days a must. weekends may have a looser schedule. activities a must to keep them occupied and ut of trouble. Food can be every other switching it up. or easier dump the other parent.

So@24 said...

As with everything in marriage...

Compromise, compromise, compromise.

lisaq said...

Well since I mostly raised my girls on my own and my own parents were pretty much in accord, this is pure conjecture. But I would think, as has already been said, it's about compromise. If it's very extreme and the kids' well being is at stake, you would need to see about getting some counseling or something to come to agreement.

CarmenSinCity said...

Ummmmmm - find someone else with similar views to raise the kids with??

The True Urban Queen aka Sharon said...

You compromise. And you don't fight or argue about it with the kids around. And you don't belittle the other parents ideas to the children.

With my children their father is Jehovah's Witness so we don't see eye to eye on many things but, I try to meet him half way on somethings and I don't interfere when he is teaching his beliefs to them.

laughingattheslut said...

This is all stuff that you should have started talking about on like the third date. Don't get involved with someone who is that different from you.

You are still going to have disagreements. After you have dumped all the idiots who don't think having a curfew is a good idea, when you actually have children with someone you're going to have to figure out what is a reasonable time for a curfew, after you've figured out what is a reasonable age to let the children go out, etc.... But you do need discuss all of this years ahead of time so that it doesn't take that much discussion when an it comes time to make a decision.

And all marriage is not about compromise when the other person is really going to do something wrong, especially something that would not be best from your children's health and well-being.

On a side note, I wish that I had been raised vegetarian. As an adult, I have often thought that being a vegetarian is probably the more intelligent choice, but it is a hard thing to get used to after you're used to eating meat. I never made the switch. I wish that kids could be raised vegetarian, even if their parents aren't, at least until the kids are old enough to figure out that chicken legs come from killed chickens.

Karyn Beach said...

It creates a real problem. I know a couple and the father tries to be more strict and set punishments and curfews but the kids just turn around and cry to the mother and she tells them they don't have to follow what the father said. As a result, the kids are out of control and the dad is miserable.

catscratch said...

Co-parenting in this house is a total nightmare.

I have two seniors in highschool and me & Big T are constantly butting heads over his kid.

In our house, and the situation... I deal with my daughter and he deals with the boy.

Darius T. Williams said...

hmmm - this is a hard one. But I'm with moooog35 - lol.

SSC~ The Domestic Diva said...

Ha I like Moooooog35's answer!

When I lived with my ex's it was about compromise. Well it was more my way. LOL. You learn to pick your battles.

They are a vegetarian and you feel there should be a curfew. Now you have a vegetarian child who has to be in by 8pm.

The trick to anything when it has to do with men is make them think it was their idea first. That is how I got most of the rules in my house implemented.

Now that I am single it is much harder and It confuses the children.

Trixie said...

You get divorced and do it all your own way! Well, that's what I did lol.

imbeingheldhostage said...

wow. We actually tested the waters before marriage on how we felt about most child-rearing issues. We haven't had too many areas we butted heads on and we've both had to suck it up and zip our lip and let the other have their way occasionally. I give in on the things that I don't think will cause the world to stop spinning. One issue we had was the teen's red mohawk. I didn't see a problem with it. I see it as a youth finding out who he is and expressing himself. My husband saw it as rebellion and was against it. I was the one who helped him dye it. Funniest part-- the Hubby had a fantastic mohawk when he was young that went from lime to blue to red and body piercings. go figure.

Joe said...

I'd venture to say that if your views on those issues are so divergent then you probably differ on quite a few other things as well. I'd wonder how this theoretical couple negotiated all of those differences.

But yes. Like everyone else said, it's all about compromise and negotiation - and not letting the children see it so that you present a united front.

Sandi McBride said...

Well first, I'd get rid of the co-parent...that's just too much disagreeing going on! Make life simple...Merry Christmas to you and hope all goes well, lol!
hugs
Sandi

Karen said...

Those are probably things you should have discussed before procreating together. It is the primary custodial parent who makes the decisions.

And if the parents are still together or married when having these disagreements, it is probably a sign that they shouldn't be. If you can't come together on the basics of life, like if a child should be hit or not, then it doesn't speak well for your relation as a whole.

Brothers Blog said...

This is such a hard situation. I know it's not always possible. But I'm a firm believer in you need to talk to your future coparent about these things before you have kids with them.

Again I know sometimes people get pregnant and can't discuss these issues before hand. But I think there has to be a middle ground. The parents have to compromise on these items and come to a happy medium that will best benefit the kids.

Freckle Face Girl said...

Sounds like a typical couple to me. Marriage gets a LOT harder once the kids come along because everyone has different views of how they should be raised, maybe not extreme opposites though. My husband and I just argue a little and get over it. :)

freckledk said...

The co-parents are reading like they're Goofus and Gallant.

Jeni said...

Ah, finally -one of the benefits I enjoyed in my life as a single parent! Actually, my ex and I were pretty much on the same page though with the kids pertaining to discipline, education and side benefits thereof too. And even if we weren't because he opted to be more of a non-participating parent owing to his loyalty which generally stayed pretty firmly put at the local pubs, I usually pretty much got my say, my way there. However, had things been different, I would have tried to find a decent compromise, providing that the kids were not direly affected until such thing could be met. And, speaking of compromise, I have to go separate a five-year-old from trying to beat her 2-year-old brother to an early demise!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year though!

dmarks said...

I have to take a step back to think about what to do when you disagree about things like this. I guess we are fortunate to rarely ever disagree.

Ann(ie) said...

I say it's mostly picking your battles. My husband and I can tend to differ, but we both put up a good fight if it's really important to us. Like I do not enjoy fox news on in my presence or the kids presence at all. hehe. So my sweet hubby goes to another room to watch that crap. ;)

Renaissance Woman said...

It's about compromising and lots and lots of discussions. Helpful if your not waiting until the situations come up to try and find a common ground to stand. Both of you love the child and love each other so try to remember that when you are coming up with a plan.

OHmommy said...

LMAO at Moogs answer....

LaiLani Ali said...

I'd use rock/paper/scissors to make decisions.

Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

happy nappy holidays folk

CarmenSinCity said...

Hey Diva! I just wanted to wish you a merry christmas and a happy new year! I'm looking forward to an exciting 2009!!

blackwomenblowthetrumpet.blogspot.com said...

Try to work out a compromise.

For those who do not have children...

Do not have children with anyone who does not share your core values and priorities...

CC said...

You compromise on the small stuff but some things you just can't get around. That's why the idea is marry someone with similar basic philosphies as yourself.