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Parenting style conflict

Posted by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 6:13 AM
  • 17 Replies
Have you ever dated someone who had a vastly different parenting style than you? How did things work out? What were some of the major differences?
For example, I am seeing a woman who is very permissive with her kids, to a point where they run the house and are absolute terrors (her first trader just got expelled yesterday, to give you a sense). I am more firm with my son. He has set boundaries. He's well-adjusted. He's not perfect, and I'm not a perfect mom, but he's safer than her kids. She tends to do what's easy over what's safe/healthy/necessary.
Now, I did bring it up to her last night, and she says that what she's doing isn't working. She says she's open to suggestions. Of course she has no intention of parenting exactly like I do, and I'd be an idiot to ever expect that. But is it possible to make this work? How can you merge families in situations like this?
by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 6:13 AM
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by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 7:51 AM
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I think two very different parenting styles are great because it forces the two of you to sit down and talk about it. I am a very permissive parent, my husband is not at all. When we got married this past summer, we had a couple of disagreements on how best to discipline the kids. I admitted that letting the kids run all over me and acting disrespectful wasn't working and he admitted that sometimes listening to them and explaining things out clearly was more helpful than just making demands. It's a struggle for any family to figure out a discipline regime and I think it gets a lot more complicated when you add already made families in to the mix. The fact that you are are both willing to work on this speaks volumes that you both are willing to adjust. THAT is what makes a good couple, not two people who parent exactly the same way.
by Melissa on Sep. 21, 2013 at 7:54 AM
We haven't really had vastly different parenting styles. Just different opinions on family size. He said it was irresponsible socially to have more then one child. Funny thing is he's now married and has two kids.

Kids like structure. They behave better when they have it. So starting with some rules might help in your situation. I wouldn't go crazy at first. Maybe some crucial safety and health rules or guidelines. Make sure they know their mom is putting these rules in to affect. You dot want them hating you super early on. We have rules and expectations for the kids. We hold to them as best we can while keeping then safe. Good luck. It's tough being the other parent when the primary parent has dropped the ball some. It's good she sees the importance of change.
by Member on Sep. 21, 2013 at 8:01 AM
I'm sorry to say, but I just don't see how this could work. My DH and I are in the trenches right now (we have a 3 year old and a 2 year old!), so that might skew my point of view! He has my back ALWAYS, and I have his ALWAYS, especially when it comes to parenting these two little terrorists!! I can't magine going through this and not having someone who had the same basic principles as me. It would ruin us. We of course don't always agree 100% on everything when it comes to the girls. When that happens we both try to be reasonable and go with whoever's idea makes the most sence...or causes the least conflict! However on the basics, like discipline, education, most rules, religion, I know we agree.
by Linnette on Sep. 21, 2013 at 8:20 AM
by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 3:04 PM


Thanks for the input so far!  =)  I might be showing her this thread!


"Don't sacrifice what you want most for what you want right now."

by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 4:25 PM

Sometimes. Along the same vein my dh and I have different religious views. It doesn't seem big, just different. Somedays it really bothers me but not enough to change my feelings/happiness.

 I guess when it feels like a BIG deal it probably is. And if its not BIG then at least be able to RESPECT each other in all situations.

by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 7:35 PM

That's funny, no.

How could you even have a serious, long-lasting, SUCCESSFUL relationship with someone like that?

by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 9:38 PM
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I'm not in a position to be dating anyone right now, but even when it comes to just building FRIENDSHIPS with other moms, major parenting differences have quickly moved to the top of my DEALBREAKER list.

I honestly try not to make it an issue, but if a woman is going to be a friend with whom I can hang out WITH OUR CHILDREN, I've simply found that major differences in behavioral expectations aren't worth the trouble.

I think maybe if/when my kids are older it will be different. But right now, I just don't have the time or the patience to make it work AND keep my personal sanity.

I'm a boundary setter. Not just with my kids, but in most of my personal relationships. It is something I have always been naturally good at. I just know where I will and will not compromise. When the lines are blurred for who is in charge, between kids and adults, I don't have time for that.

Claire Wait

My blog:

by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 12:01 AM
I wondered the same thing, and our relationship about ended over it. She says she's open to change and ideas (because her daughters do behave much better when in my care). We'll see what happens!

Quoting .Peaches.:

That's funny, no.

How could you even have a serious, long-lasting, SUCCESSFUL relationship with someone like that?

by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 1:57 AM

I wouldn't be able to do it, I'm married to the father of my kids; but have had to end friendships over what you are describing and even stay away from some family except for birthdays and holidays! 

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