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New Balance Sneakers for the entire family!

* This post is sponsored by Superbalist. It's the beginning of a new school year and the start of all kinds of extra-murals and sports for our crew... That means shoe shopping. More specifically, sneaker shopping! Growing feet need new trainers for netball, hockey,...

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5 Tips for parenting as a team!

by | Aug 30, 2022 | Just Motherhood, Parenting | 0 comments

When it comes to parenting as a team things tend to get a little “messy”…

Mommy’s little angels love eating their veggies, while daddy’s kids always know where all the sweet treats are hidden.

When mom’s in charge homework gets done, rooms are kept tidy and everything runs on a schedule. On dad’s watch… Everyone seems to get lost in front of the TV and bathtime regularly ends in a hallway slip-n-slide.

Mom feels tired, angry and stressed ALL OF THE TIME because it’s hard being the default parent. Especially when dad gets to have all the fun. Although he’s much better at disciplining the kids. So sometimes, mom uses dad as a scare tactic because “You just wait till your father hears about this!” One stern look and a good talking to from him and everyone seems to fall in line.

Does anything sound familiar?

Our home used to run on “mom duties” and “dad duties”. The way I wanted to raise our kids vs. the way “you” wanted to raise our kids. Not parenting as a team led to many situations like the ones illustrated above. None left us feeling great because when members of the same team compete in a tug-of-war against one another… NO ONE WINS.

Conflicting parenting styles lead to utterly confused kids and teens that know exactly how to turn the situation around for their own benefit. I know this from personal experience. That is why we chose to prioritise parenting as a team sooner rather than later.

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What does parenting as a team look like?

My husband and I differ a lot! Chalk and cheese. Childhood and the way we were raised hold even less in common. So who’s “right” and who’s “wrong”?

NEITHER OF US!

Our kids are ours, mine and his, and they are meant to be raised by both of us. Flaws and all. Parenting and discipline differs in every household. Most of the time it even differs between siblings because what works for our eldest has almost no impact on our youngest… And let’s not even mention our wild middle child.

So where do we start?

With the two of us…

parenting as a team

We are the heart of our family, where everything begins. If we keep “us” strong and united, nothing can overpower us or our family. (Not even our beloved children and the many challenges parenting holds.)

Write this truth in your hearts. Whether you’re religious or not, and move forward in unity as you figure out what’s best for your family, TOGETHER.

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5 Guidelines that help us, parent, as a team:

  1. Different doesn’t mean wrong or bad. Parenting can be a bit of a “hit and miss” experience at times and more often than not our approach to discipline and day-to-day responsibilities will differ. We choose not to see our differences as a negative thing but rather as opportunities to learn from each other. Instead of fighting for our own point of view, we seek common ground. This helps us find an approach that suits our entire family best. Remember, our kids share characteristics with mom and with dad. That means both of us will have ample opportunity to “know what’s best” in different situations.
  2. Teamwork requires giving and taking. Parenting isn’t a mom vs. dad bare-knuckle fight to the end or a one (wo)man show. We approach it as a relay team. Supporting and being there for your partner is key. No one is expected to run the race alone or to keep going till they simply can’t go any further. Parenting will feel overwhelming, some days are longer than others and challenges keep coming. That’s why we all need a helping hand. We have clear, realistic expectations of one another and stand ready at the baton pass. Somedays we finish the race victorious and other days someone drops the baton… We do however keep running together.
  3. Communicate. We are born with one mouth and two ears – that should be a clear explanation of how healthy communication works. Talk, a lot, but listen even MORE. Date nights are great but let’s be honest… Sometimes crawling up onto the couch after a full day of work or parenting wins over finding a babysitter, dressing up for dinner and actually leaving the house. That’s why we started “Tues-dates“. Our weekly early morning breakfast dates. Just us, for an hour or so. Talking and catching up with no interruptions. Our “Tues-dates” keep us connected and on the same page.
  4. Consistency and accountability are important. Keep at it. Over time, after a few “Tues-dates” and lots of communication, we found our unique approach to parenting. Something that works for the entire family and utilises our strong suits. We tweak certain approaches to meet each child’s needs and give each other the space and respect we deserve to both be involved parents. We help one another “stick to the plan” while also being adaptable because kids change and grow older and we need to adjust – facing each new challenge.
  5. Always act in love. This one isn’t easy but it is the most important. We needed to accept that we are only human. We make mistakes. Our partners and our children also make mistakes. None of us are perfect, even when we try our best to be. Have grace in abundance! Grace with yourself as well as your partner. Be an example of grace and self-acceptance to your children. Soon you’ll start seeing them show that same grace and love towards themselves and others too.
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You’ll never regret parenting as a team, whatever your family circumstances may be…

Divorced, separated, having a partner work abroad, widowed, absent partner. Your teammate could be entirely different from the norm. Maybe he/she will show up in a close friend, or family member, or a parent dealing with the same loss and challenge you are facing. Not giving up and seeking the support we need as parents will only benefit our children while also lightening the load we carry.

5 tips for parenting as a team
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PHOTO & VIDEO CREDIT | Robyn Davie Creative Studio
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