How to Parent as a Team When You Disagree With Your Partner

Everybody has different parenting styles, which is only natural as each individual has their own beliefs, values, and comfort zones. You may not consider that this extends to your partner as well until you come across an issue that you stand on opposing sides of.

Having disagreements with regards to how to discipline your children is very natural, and does not necessarily mean that you aren’t compatible parents.

It simply means that you don’t share the same perspective on one particular issue – you are two different people, after all.

It can be difficult to navigate a situation in which you both want different things.

Here are some tips to help you come to a comfortable middle ground:

Find Common Ground

In the moment this may be difficult, but if you explore your disagreement enough there’s bound to be at least a little something that you can agree on.

It might be easier to find this common ground by first diffusing any tension and identifying something that you like about their approach before delving into the issue to find a middle ground.

Present Yourselves as a Unified Team

It’s important for your child to see that you and your partner are in agreement with each other, even if you aren’t. This is so that your authority as parents is not undermined. Disagreeing in front of your child will encourage them to go to one parent and not the other, playing you off each other in order to get what they want.

Try to keep the focus on your child’s behavior when disciplining rather than your disagreement.

Identify Who Feels More Strongly About the Issue

Some issues may not seem like a big deal to you but really are to your partner and vice versa. While one party may simply dislike or disagree with something, the other may feel truly uncomfortable and distressed.

In this situation, it might be better to defer to the person who is going to be most emotionally affected.

Empathise With Your Child Without Breaking Unity

It’s very important to make sure that your child feels heard without throwing your spouse under the bus and breaking your unified front.

Kids need to feel understood in order to understand your decision themselves, but they also need to know that the disciplinary action taken was a joint decision even if that’s not entirely the truth.

Identify the Underlying Reasons for Why You Disagree

Your parenting style is likely influenced by your own experience and potentially even how your parents parented you. Whether you mimic your own parents’ style or you go in the complete opposite direction, you and your partner may have had different experiences in your childhood.

Understanding the reasons behind their decisions and feelings is important as it will help you to empathise with their position, in turn making it easier to come to a unified decision.

Go Back to Basics

Discuss what is absolutely non-negotiable in your household. These include health and safety rules and family values. You and your partner are likely to find common ground here as you are both invested in protecting your children and raising them well.

These will help you present as a unified front and remind you that you do have common ground to build on.

Keep Communication Lines Open

Like many facets of a relationship, communication is essential to unified parenting. If you disagree with your spouse, let them know so that it doesn’t end up spilling out in anger.

It’s a good idea to communicate when you’re calm rather than in a heated space, as it will make it easier for you to understand each other.

At the end of the day, we need to accept the differences between us and our partners. This doesn’t only apply to discipline, but your relationship at large. Being okay with who they are and learning to compromise is a fantastic skill that will allow you to become the super-parent team that you can be!

Mums, do you and your partner have the same parenting style, or do you also sometimes ‘knock heads’ with how certain things should be handled?

Comment below to let us know x

8 thoughts on “How to Parent as a Team When You Disagree With Your Partner

  1. Jolene says:

    Lovely article. Thanks @Mumbox.
    Me and my hubby do tend to knock head sometimes when it comes to our toddlers, but we always get back to the issue and try to resolve it asap. Thanks for the tips in this article, I can use it and be better going forward.

  2. brigitte.segoe says:

    thank you so much for this article, i’ve been struggling with this…our parenting skills differ because of our different background, we need to find a balance…i even went on a parenting course at work because i felt i needed help with dealing with some emotions…you can never learn enough when it comes to parenting we learn everyday

  3. tmabasa says:

    I love this article. It states exactly what most parents are facing, me included. He says I am very strict and I say he usually let’s our daughter do whatever she wants knowing fully we’ll that what she is doing is wrong. However, we don’t argue infront of her. I love this article, thank you

  4. rabia says:

    We have 4 boys 2 girls.. One or 2 of them tried playing us off each other they quickly learned that we dnt agree without the other confirming it.. There is no mommy said yes can I go…. Lol daddy will call mommy to find out…at times I think he is too harsh yet I never bring it up Infrnt of the kids… As they grew older the cousins would tell them to play us against each other they started telling the cousins we are a tag team cos what the one starts the other will follow threw…. Lol.. They all know u choose the behavior that means u choose the consequences…. To many we are hash our kids only get cell fone frm 14 and that is due to having to need web access for projects… We both born In the 70s and respect and accountability it’s what we try to teach them

  5. Selona says:

    I absolutely love this article,, so helpful. I’m always the bad parent…. I discipline and I make the rules. We always agree because he feels I’m abit to strict.

  6. farzaana.israel says:

    My Husband and I have the same parenting principles, however, there are certain things which I do not agree on with them when it comes to the kids, but we do address it in an appropiate manner.
    This article is really very informative.

  7. locxyisabel5 says:

    I was thinking maybe I’m too much I always disagree a lot with my husband when it comes to disciplining our kids and I was doing it wrong I always snap in front of the kid . This article has taught me a lot

Leave a Reply