Question:

I have found this a very disturbing thing, when I see a couple who go through this very common problem.
The wife is usually the one to say no to the child (for eg. a treat when it’s bedtime) and the child has such a tantrum.
Then the husband who’s sitting right there feels sorry and he says ‘just this once then yes’ or ‘ok a little one’. It makes me so frustrated, because it encourages their behaviour and causes the mother’s words to suddenly appear feeble!
Because by doing so, it rewards the child for the tantrum so they know they can always do it next time, and also the child then feels like their father is more kind and that they can always rely on him to come to their aid.
And I find this is usually how the roles are in regards to father and mother. Even if the wife would ask her husband to try not to do so, I think it won’t really help in the long run!
so what could be done in such cases to change the situation and at the same time not encourage the child’s tantrums?
Thanks very much!

Answer:

True, it is very frustrating to a parent when the other spouse does something that undermines the chinuch that they are giving to the children. You must however bear in mind that to fight about it in front of the children will be even worse, therefore the best thing you can do at the time is to keep quiet. Yes, by giving in to a tantrum it is teaching the child that crying is an effective tool to use to get what he wants, but to see his parents fighting is undermining the foundations of his security.

The way to deal with such an issue is to work on communication with your husband, and discuss such situations before they occur. In a theoretical way, “how should be deal with a situation when …”. This way the two of you will hopefully be on the same page when the situation arises, and such aggravation will be avoided.

Best wishes

 

Tags: Chinuch Shalom Bayis

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