For most parents, disciplining kids isn’t easy in the first place, but what if you and a partner or co-parent have disparities when it comes to how to discipline your child or children? If you’re in this position, you may find yourself arguing or facing stress related to discipline, which can strain your relationship and family life. Thankfully, there are some things you and your partner or co-parent can do.
What To Do When You Don’t Agree On Discipline
There are a number of different reasons why you and your partner or co-parent might not agree on discipline for your child or children. It could be that you had different upbringings, that you view the situation as it relates to your child or what happened that caused a need for discipline differently, or it could be something entirely separate. Whatever the case may be, here are some things you can do to help yourselves come to a conclusion together:
- Know the facts. Know the facts about what is and is not healthy for kids as far as discipline goes. If you have a partner who is, say, in favor of spanking or other forms of physical punishment, do not waver in your stance against it. Research shows that spanking has serious consequences for kids, and experts recommend across the board that you do not spank children or use other forms of physical punishment.
- Discuss it away from the kids. Not only is it best that you talk about anything you disagree on away from the kids as a general rule, but it’s important that you agree to conclude what the consequence will be and how it’ll be implemented away from the kids. By the time you talk to your child or children, it’s essential to have a clear-cut idea of what discipline will be. They need consistency.
- Be realistic. To extend on the last point, the discipline you decide on should be realistic. Don’t tell your child that they are going to get a punishment if you cannot follow through with it. They need to know that you mean what you say so that they know they can rely on your word, whether that is about punishment or something else.
- Keep your goal in mind. The goal is not “to win.” Instead, the goal is to collaborate, communicate, and do what’s best for your child or children. When you and your partner or co-parent have a discussion about discipline, do it during a calm time where you are both able to dedicate your attention to the conversation.
- See a therapist. A therapist can help you communicate with your partner and come to a conclusion about how to navigate discipline and other concerns. Therapy isn’t just for couples; this may also be advantageous if you’re working with a co-parent to establish discipline for your child or children.
Find A Therapist
Punishment can be a scary word, and you don’t necessarily need to view discipline that way. Whether you’re struggling with parenting, interpersonal relationships, mental health, or something else that’s on your mind, a therapist or counselor can help. There are a number of different ways to find a therapist. You can search the web for a provider near you, ask your doctor for a referral, contact your insurance company to see who they cover, or sign up for a reputable online therapy platform like BetterHelp. All of the providers on the BetterHelp platform are licensed, and BetterHelp offers both individual and couples therapy, making it easy to find a provider who meets your needs. Regardless of how you find a therapist or counselor, you deserve to get quality care, so don’t hesitate to take the first step and reach out today.
Marie Miguel Biography
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.