How do I deal with the conflicts in raising children?

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Answered by: Stacey, An Expert in the Home and Family Category
As a mother of five children from ages one to fifteen, I have experienced almost every kind of situation imaginable. My first experience as a parent was over ten years ago when I married a man that had a two year old daughter. It wasn't until a year later that I became a parent myself. That is when I first realized that there are conflicts in raising children. These conflicts come from almost everywhere: the other parent, children arguing, discipline, differences in personality, and even learning. Of course those aren't all.

When raising children, we are faced with dilemmas on a daily basis. One of the most common is discipline. Every situation is different and requires different consequences. They to resolving this is to set standards. Let your children know what the repercussions are for every action. Keeping it in view of all members of the household, refer to it when children misbehave so that it is understood what the discipline is. Always be consistent, even with other children.

Another area where conflicts often arrive is dealing with the other parent. Whether you share a child or one of you is a step-parent, conflicts in raising children will always be there. These conflicts could arise in discipline, parenting, morals, values or even learning. It is important to discuss these issues with the other parent privately. This allows each opinion to be voiced and a chance to get on the same page. One valuable lesson that I have learned over the years is to never belittle the other parent in front of the children EVER. This creates questions in the child's mind on the authority of the parents. If one parent questions the actions of the other in front of the child, the child will also question the actions of the parent. Monkey see. Monkey do.

Another conflict that I faced as a step-parent is dealing with the absent parent. This is been the subject of many disagreements on more than one occasion. The thing to remember is who the responsibility lies on. It was in fact the birth parents that brought the child into the world thus it is the responsibility only of the birth parents to see that the child has what they need. I always voiced my opinions but it was just that--an opinion. I had no final say in any matter. Whether I like it or not, there was always another mother and no matter how I saw her, I realized that she was loved by her children. I had to learn the hard way never to talk down about the absent parent in front of the children.

These are just a few of the conflicts we face in raising our children. There are many more that have turned up or will turn up in the future. The best way to deal with a conflict is to think anything through before acting on it. You have to always remember there is another parent and their opinion does matter.

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