My wife and I have had our fights and disagreements like many married couples out there, but, surprisingly, we haven’t had all that many fights or disagreements about parenting.
And it still seems odd to me. Something as important as parenting seems like it should be the topic that draws lots of passion and, consequently, disagreement. After all, Casey and I were both raised in very different households with very different parenting styles.
I think it is natural for new parents to look back at their lives to see what good things their parents did and to want to incorporate those positive parenting decisions into how they choose to parent. Similarly, new parents can look back at their lives to see what didn’t work for their parents and they try to prevent themselves from making those same decisions.
Not every child is the same, however, so it is quite common for one parent to view a particular parenting decision as a positive and for the other parent to view that exact same decision as a negative. This has probably been the biggest source of any disagreements Casey and I have had when it comes to our daughters.
These are some of the situations where our parenting styles tend to clash:
I was raised in a home with strict rules that required strict adherence. So I anticipated teaching Addie to obey at a young age as well. I worried that she would never learn how to behave otherwise. This meant that when we went to church, Addie was required to sit still on the church pew and to remain seated throughout the entire service. Obviously, that’s a pretty difficult thing for a 2-year-old to do. Casey took a much different view. She would have allowed Addie to freely roam the chapel so long as she did not climb up onto the organ bench and start pounding out a tune in the middle of the sermon. This battle went back and forth, week after week, and I don’t think we ever really came to a conclusion. But I can already tell with Vivi that we have both moved significantly closer to a common ground. We don't let her roam the aisles, but I'm a bit more flexible, too.
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