When Mom and Dad Disagree
My husband and I are pretty unique in that we discussed a myriad of future issues long before we got married. I distinctly remember talking about when to have kids, how many kids to have, and how much time we wanted to leave between our first and second child. We discussed budget, how to afford for me to stay home, when I would go back to work. And we even discussed parenting before our kids arrived including how we felt about breastfeeding, when to start solids, and how much TV was allowed.
I'm telling you. We had it all covered.
But what we've found as our kids have gotten older - they're now 7 and 5 - is that we had the basics covered. We wanted to teach our children to eat healthy food and treat others as they would like to be treated. We wanted them to work hard and have fun. But when would they be allowed to watch their first PG movie? At what age could they have their first sleepover? And what would we tell them about....gulp...s-e-x.
The fact is that no matter how well prepared you are to have kids and no matter how open the dialogue is with your partner, there will always be issues left uncovered and the opportunity for disagreement. My husband and I have agreed on all of the major issues and have settled the rest amicably. He defers to me on things that are more in my sphere such as ear piercing and hair cuts for our daughter.
I'm trying to encourage him to choose his battles, as well, and will support him when he does. Unfortunately, we were raised very differently so I anticipate some intense discussions in our future. His parents were hands off and hope for the best. Mine resorted to leaving pamphlets about morality at my spot on the kitchen table to drive home their (already well made) points. I am confident, however, that the same agreement about how to live life in general will follow us into the more difficult discussions in our parenting future.
How do you and your partner decide what to tell the kids when you fall on different sides of the fence?