How to Re-assure Your Kid When He/she sees you Fighting

talk about why you fought with your spouse to your child- Parenting resources by ZenParent

Fighting and arguing in front of your kids may not be as detrimental to their emotional set up as we always have been thinking. Till recent times, most of the parents were led to believe that presenting a rosy and near perfect picture of their relationship was the ideal atmosphere they could give to their kids for raising them to be happy adults and fights were to take place strictly behind closed doors. But psychologists are now advising otherwise. Of course, like everywhere else, there are a set of rules to be followed here too and by doing so, parents offer the reassurance kids need that all is well along with letting them learn some very important life lessons. So next time, if there is a fight brewing up, this is what you can keep in mind.

1. Prepare your kids to face reality- You are upset with your spouse & want to vent it out, but your kid is watching and you wonder if you should hold it till you are alone. Patrick Davies, who is a psychologist and has been conducting many studies on the subject feels that you shouldn’t. If you are never going to expose your kid to this facet of life, then how is he/she going to learn to cope up with conflicts? Your kid needs to register that arguments and fights are a part of every relationship and what is important is to learn to resolve them in a fair way. This is something you can communicate directly or through your actions to your kid and reassure him/her that fights are not the end of the world but an opportunity to solve the underlying problems.

fighting with your partner should be known to your child- Parenting resources by ZenParent

 

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2. Target the issue and not the person- So your husband has refused to baby sit your kid and also has not been helping you take care of the kids off lately, which is why, you both are having a heated discussion about that. Your kid is listening and senses it that it is he/she who is the reason behind the fight. Most kids believe that their parents fight because of them. It is in times like these that a little caution on your part can relieve your kid of the heavy burden of guilt. Firstly, instead of using sentences like YOU are irresponsible or YOU are being selfish with your husband, the sentence has to be re-framed as WHAT YOU DID was irresponsible or selfish. This highlights the person’s action as inappropriate rather than the person or the situation (presence of kids) as being bad and comforts kids. Secondly, having a mature & a non-accusing argument and ending the fight with a laugh or on a positive note not only relieves kids but also teaches them to handle stress and conflicts as required. If you feel that the fight is showing no signs of solution and is getting a little ugly then it is better to refrain, model self-control and take things forward in the absence of kids.

3. Keep kids in the loop- If you and your spouse have been having serious difference of opinions, and require intervention by a professional- psychological or legal, it is not advisable to keep your kid in the dark and let him/her keep guessing and get anxious. Kids tend to imagine the worst and in turbulent times like these, they are the most unheard and ignored. They quietly absorb everything they see & hear and based on their innocent and raw knowledge, they form long-lasting opinions and beliefs that can be really negative. Although, it is not required to share every detail of the situation with them, but talking to them about what actually is happening and how you are trying to solve it helps tremendously. Once again, assuring them that they are not responsible for the fight and explaining to them that when parents seem to disagree on many issues and are not happy, it is okay for them to go their separate ways to lead better lives. But this does not mean that they both don’t love their kid and in fact, they will both be there together for him/her, no matter with whom the kid chooses to live.

fighting with your partner in front of your child is okay- Parenting resources by ZenParent

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As much as they learn with a lightning speed, kids also take a while adjusting to disturbances, new situations and arrangements. All they need is continuous support, love and reassurance from parents and they are convinced that despite the problems, the world is still a beautiful place to live in with their parents who no matter what will be there for them always.

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