I'm 30 years old, no kids, and just two weeks ago I tried to explain to my own parents how influential there relationship has been on my life. My parents have definitely had their ups and downs just like any marriage...however, they did a lot of their fighting in front of me. Made me feel like I had to pick sides on who was right. And always involving me with their adult issues. I was 11 years old. I didn't need to know what was going on in my parents’ marriage. But my mother always made it a point to tell me what he was up to.In contrast, a woman replied about her upbringing being completely opposite:
I grew up the exact opposite and also got married at a very young age. I was married at 18 (to my high school sweetheart), had my first child at 19, and divorced at 20. I wanted a relationship exactly like my parents: My parents NEVER fought in front of us. I cannot remember one time them fighting. I married for the 2nd time and found myself thinking "I don't need a man" anytime that we fought. I thought marriages were supposed to be perfect and we were never supposed to fight.*These comments were much, much longer, but I just used a small portion. You can probably find the comment in it's entirety if you really want, just have to click on the link to the article.
Do you argue or fight (or discuss heatedly...whatever you want to call it!) in front of your children? I can tell you that Josh and I are NOTHING like our parents, and I won't go into much detail about what those dynamics were like. One of us understands the no fighting thing and how that affects how a person views relationships. The other understands once-every-five-years-fighting and how never discussing anything and then fighting ugly can affect how a person views relationships.
Most would agree that the situation from the first comment is not a good thing - to fight like that or discuss adult issues with a child. But do we also realize how detrimental it is to never fight or disagree in front of our children either? If they never see us argue or recognize that adults don't always agree, then they will think that marriages are just perfect - like the second commenter.
I guess I bring this up because I've often heard that parents shouldn't fight in front of their kids. Even though it's been tough around here at times, I can honestly say that Josh and I don't yell or call each other names when we're angry. I think it's good for our kids to see that things aren't always perfect. But if I can tell it's going to get a little too heated, I will make a point to stop and say, "We'd better do this later." Honestly, that's not very often (just the "too heated" part...don't get me wrong...we've disagreed in front of them...maybe more than some would think is ok).
I can say with 100% certainty, though, that I will never, ever tell my children what their dad is doing "wrong"...I have best friends for that, and that's where it should stay (I mean, if I need to vent, I will tell a best friend).
What is your fighting policy?