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Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Parents: what have been some disagreements over parenting in your relationship?

Asked by Simone_De_Beauvoir (39047points) September 30th, 2011

This one assumes that the people who made the baby are together, for the most part…though, surely you can share if you’re no longer with that person or that person was only donating their body to bring about your child (surrogate, sperm donor, you adopted as a single parent)...just that the latter is probably laced with tension of your break-up or what have you…

If you’ve ever disagreed with your partner about something parenting-related, what was it over? And how did it resolve itself?

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16 Answers

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

Ear piercing.

A family member of mine had lost an ear due to infection. My wife, at the time, and her parents wished to get my daughters ears pierced almost immediately after birth. I insisted that none of my children would ever have an ear pierced.

We split the difference at 8 years old.

geeky_mama's avatar

Oh lord.. I cannot even count how many disagreements we’ve had.
I was raised with REALLY strict parents..and occasionally fall back on the old scripts re-running in my head. I think he’s not disciplining the kids being too lenient, he thinks I yell too much..and the entire family says I baby our youngest child too much (which, as the firstborn..who felt like my younger sibling was favored I find terribly ironic).

The big stuff we disagree(d) on and how it went:

a) He wanted to call the pediatrician and wait for a call-back when our oldest child (his daughter, my stepdaughter) was 18 mo. old and woke up with paralysis on one side of her body. I was gobsmacked. I snatched her up and told him I was taking her to the Emergency Room at Children’s Hospital and he could either get in the car or wait for me to call him later with updates. (I won that one. He gets a dope-smack in the head for his passivity when she clearly was in need of medical attention.)

b) When the oldest child wanted to dye her hair (with permanent hair coloring) at age 10 I said absolutely not. I was over-ruled by her biological mother and my husband. I thought it was the dumbest thing ever – what a waste of $160 to cover up her lovely blond hair. But, I bit my tongue since I wasn’t paying for it (the one thing we agreed on was that we wouldn’t pay for it—so her mother paid for salon hair coloring)—and she eventually tired of it after 3 years. She’s 14 now and finally back to her natural hair color. (deep exhale)

c) The oldest daughter (poor girl, such a guinea pig) wanted to get her ears pierced at an age I thought was too young. Or, at least the bio-mom wanted to take her to get them pierced..and SD was just 5. (Just around the time she started Kindergarten.) I disagreed—but lost this battle too. I think we were able to hold her off until grade 2..but my darling stepdaughter later said: “I should never have gotten my ears pierced that young..I couldn’t take care of them myself.” So – while I lost the battle, the SD appreciates that I tried to preserve her from the resulting infections and tangled hair that had to be cut out of her earrings, etc.

After 3.5 kids we’ve gotten much more mellow and both tend to do a better job of parenting without conflict.

wonderingwhy's avatar

Second hand story.

I’ve just spent the better part of the evening listening to a deepening disagreement over education, specifically montessori+private schooling vs. public schooling vs. a some infernal combination of the two that neither could agree on. Essentially each parent wants their son to receive education similar to their own and vehemently disagrees that the others perspective is significantly beneficial to concede to.

Needless to say, it’s not been resolved. I’ve no doubt they’ll come to an amicable agreement (they always do) thought judging by some of the comments it likely won’t be for a good bit. And this is certainly the most “disagreeable” I’ve seen them in public.

Cruiser's avatar

Baptism and Briss. I was raised Catholic, my wife is Jewish…no way in hell she would let me Baptize my boys and no way in hell I was gonna let some dude circumcise my boys in my dining room at 8 days old. 12 year later I am glad neither of us gave in.

Rarebear's avatar

All the time. It resolves itself by my saying, “You’re right.”

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Rarebear Any examples? What was the last one about? Why do you always defer to your spouse, in the end? Doesn’t that make you feel shitty?

Pandora's avatar

Over spanking my son when he was little. My husband and I both grew up in homes where spanking was normal. Only in my husbands home it always sounded more like abuse than disappline.
I settled it really easy. Told him that only person who carried him for 9 months gets to determine his punishment. He was a toddler and although I believe in spanking, I do not believe it proper for a toddler who has little comprehension of what is right or wrong. Actually, I never really spanked them as much as I would just slap their hands if the first punishment didn’t sink in.
So it was decided that I only get to be the one to dole out the punishments. Time outs with an explaination of why they got punished and only followed by the hand slap if they did something again in a short period. My son could do time out without breaking a sweat, so it didn’t always work and at two he was very, very stubborn.
Usually I would go with the hand slap if they did something dangerous like play with the stove or break something that could hurt them.
My husband was allowed to give time outs only. I didn’t trust him to know his own strength or what to over look for being just two year old normal behavior.

zenvelo's avatar

My now ex has considered our son as “broken” since he was young. He did have some minor developmental delays when he was young, but as recently as eight weeks ago, in court for a custody ruling, expressed that he had all kinds of problems with language skills, reading, and written expression.

Then his state testing results came last week, and he is in 100th percentile for those two categories. (Math he’s not too strong though…) .

He’s a smart kid.

She also says I am lenient because I don’t yell at him.

Seek's avatar

I’m much less concerned about gender-related issues than my husband. He wants to… I almost want to say “shield” our son from “girly” things. I’m of the opinion that if the kid wants a Barbie, give him a damn Barbie. Turns out he only wanted the Barbie so he could feel her up, so I don’t know what the Hubs is so worried about anyway.

Oh, I also think he wants me to teach the boy about religion, so he can “choose for himself what he believes in”. Frankly, there are a lot of religions in the world, and I have no desire to pretend all of them exist at the same time in order to let my son choose his own delusion. I have better things to teach, like natural selection and how to recognise logical fallacies.

Rarebear's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Sorry, it was just a joke. In actuality, we don’t have any really significant disagreements about parenting. Minor stuff sometimes, but never anything major.


What time the children go to bed during the summer. I say let them stay up late if they want, but she says they should go to bed at the about the same time as their regular bedtime during school nights. We compromised and let the children stay up about 1 hour later than their regular bedtimes.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

He wasn’t there much to parent while we were together because he worked a lot. Now all of the burden is on me, and when he has them, he is superdad and all of the nose blowing, clothes washing, driving to events, getting up everyday @ 5:20 to get them to the bus stop, cooking, cleaning…

all of that is second hand, useless and I’m STILL nobody and nothing… Just like I was when we were together, only now because absence makes the heart grow fonder, he is Mr. Wonderful.
So anything I say discipline wise is negated and ignored but all I have to say is “Don’t make me call daddy.” and all of a sudden magically that somehow matters.

I dunno, It sucks and quite frankly I’m over it.

cookieman's avatar

Thankfully, nothing major.

We regularly disagree on managing expectations. If my daughter wants (to do) something, I say things such as, “we’ll see” or “okay, maybe”. I basically commit to nothing. My wife, otoh, promises the world, but often doesn’t follow through as she’s over-extended herself. Frankly, neither works well, as my daughter gets frustrated by both.

Seek's avatar

^ It’s true. Kids learn quick that “we’ll see” is synonymous with “no”.

ucme's avatar

The wife wasn’t too keen on our daughter taking up football (soccer) when she was 10yrs old.
I informed her she was being silly & there was nothing to concern herself over. She agreed after the briefest of conversations. All was well again, which is nice.

fluthernutter's avatar

I was surprised to find out that my husband considered smoking out with the kids a dealbreaker.

When I was pregnant, we used to throw out parenting hypotheticals. Mind you, I wasn’t saying that I’d buy them an eighth myself. But I don’t see much harm in smoking a joint every now and then. (So long as you’re not operating heavy machinery, firearms or pregnant/breastfeeding.) I joked that if I ever caught them smoking out, I would probably just join them because I wouldn’t have had one in forever. (Gave it up after we decided to have kids.) He wasn’t too keen on my response.

The funny thing is that he used to smoke out way more than I ever did. Go figure.

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