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Question
Posted by: zeee | 2012/05/17

parentng

Hi Doc,

I have had endless quarrels with my husband regarding parenting.... I have always known how I would like to bring up my kids (2 and 4) and what methods i''d like to make use of. But since my eldest birth we have never agreed on anything, as far as I can see he has never really thought this through and just take each situation as it comes mostly switching from discipline method to the next. For the 1st 2 years as parents he has did not attempt to enforce any discipline at all, untill just before our eldest 2nd bday when we had a fallout with his parents, did he start to discipline our child. Our daughter at the time was at a difficult stage as any 23month old was, we were on holiday in dubai so routine could hardly be kept, I was 6months pregnant at the time and his parent (who only see their grandchildren 2-3times a year) made a comment about us not being in controll of our child which was absolute nonsense. My husband just never participated in any discipline of any sort. After this (I was extreme angry, sad and emotional about this) I told my husband to pull up his socks and be a DAD. Anyway, ever since he has reluctantly participated but now I have noticed that his discipline skills is just absurd. He would nag our kids to stop being naughty instead of being serious and sort them out there and then and when he gets fed-up he will (out of frustration) either shout at them or stand right above them pointing fingers and at times swear while scoulding them. If my 4 year old wets her bed (mostly due to wanting serial with milk at 20h00) he would tell her that she is a baby or if she cries while washing hair he would again tell her she is a baby, I wanted, ever since my daughter was 1y old, to do the sleep training with her and my son but he has always intervined and when he intervine he is very abrupt and it usually end in a quarrel of some sort. If my daughter cries/naggs or my son throughs a tantrum and I put them en their rooms he would get mad and let them out or shout at me to let them out in less than 2min, I also believe in a slap on the bum if necessary in certain situation but my husban ONLY believes in giving them a hiding BUT he never wants to do it himself unless he gets frustrated with them ..... I hope i''ve made my point, there is so much I can elaborate on but all I want to know if how can I make my husband understand that he is not doing this right or am I wrong?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Well, for a start you are absolutely right that it is important for a couple to share a common and united policy for child-rearing and especially for discipline. Inconsistency bwteen the parents, and even more ( as you seem to be describing ) within one parent, is needlessly confusing.
Its just not fair to the child to make it up as you go along, or switch to whatever approach is flavour of the week. I wonder what sort of discipline and chil-rearing was used when he was young ?
The behaviours you describe sound like an insecure and uncertain little man trying to be authoritarian without knowing how to do it.
I like Purple's idea of getting some good paenting books, and after reading them yourself, ask him to read them, as you find them very helpful, and would value his opinion about how to put these methods into practice.
Sadly, so much more than he realises, he illustrates how useless and counter-productive "a good hiding" is for children. Sounds like his main aim is to impress his parents. Are they in any way possibly allies ? Would they be open to reading a good parenting book with you, understandoing your concerns, and helping to persuade him to try these methods ?

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: Zeee | 2012/05/17

Hi Purple,

I tried, he is just not interested. I like to browse parenting site every now and again to read up on age appropriate subjects relating to my kids. If I come across something interesting of something we''ve spoken about I will email him the info but with all emails of any subject he just deletes it, he will read one once in a blue moon. He says he does not like to read but off course have no problem reading articles on things HE is interested in. Everytime I bring up a subject he will reluctantly stand there and listen and hardly comment about it or he will just tell me how silly it is and that he was brought up with HIDINGS only and none of the silly psychological methods I am interested in. If one of our children would act out for some reason and it''s one of those days where everyone in the house is just not ON PAR, he would tell me that this is the result of my psychological ways and the child needs a good HIDING but he says way more than he does...... only time he tries he''s utmost best to discipline them in his strange manner is when he''s around his PARENTS, to impress them, sometimes he makes such a scene about something that I don''t know where to hide my head, it''s so embarrasing and I have NO IDEE what they think about it ''cause since the fall out in Dubai they have never tried to intervene again, which I really are happy about but I wish they could say something if they do think THEIR son is wrong.

Reply to Zeee
Posted by: Purple | 2012/05/17

Would it work to get some good parenting books and ask your husband if you could perhaps both read them and discuss them together so taht you can implement a similar and consistent discipline plan? Some excellent books are: How to talk so kids will listen and listen so kids will talk, also, Adventures in Gentle Discipline, and Toddler Taming. All of them are very sensible and as you read them you can actually see those things happening in your home. They are all short easy reads.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/05/17

Well, for a start you are absolutely right that it is important for a couple to share a common and united policy for child-rearing and especially for discipline. Inconsistency bwteen the parents, and even more ( as you seem to be describing ) within one parent, is needlessly confusing.
Its just not fair to the child to make it up as you go along, or switch to whatever approach is flavour of the week. I wonder what sort of discipline and chil-rearing was used when he was young ?
The behaviours you describe sound like an insecure and uncertain little man trying to be authoritarian without knowing how to do it.
I like Purple's idea of getting some good paenting books, and after reading them yourself, ask him to read them, as you find them very helpful, and would value his opinion about how to put these methods into practice.
Sadly, so much more than he realises, he illustrates how useless and counter-productive "a good hiding" is for children. Sounds like his main aim is to impress his parents. Are they in any way possibly allies ? Would they be open to reading a good parenting book with you, understandoing your concerns, and helping to persuade him to try these methods ?

Reply to cybershrink

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