Co-Parenting – Disciplining Children

It is hard enough disciplining a child these days with all the controversy on what is appropriate and what isn’t. Do we risk having our children taken away from us by using a swat now and then or do we use what they call positive disciplining, reinforcing children’s good behavior? Personally, I don’t see how we can ignore bad behavior, and I know that I was a stubborn child that needed a swat on more than one occasion.

Disciplining children after divorce is going to be challenging. Communication between parents isn’t always the greatest and children may be pushing the envelope a bit more than usual because they are craving attention or having a hard time dealing with the divorce.

Though you and your spouse may not be together anymore, it is essential that you parent on familiar ground. Openly and honestly discuss the parameters with your former spouse and your children so that when discipline is needed the consequences are understood and consistent.

Consistency is the key to successful discipline. I understand the difficulty, but your children must know that particular behavior is not tolerated and that there will be consequences. Sometimes I find myself after a hard days’ work coming home to a daughter that wants nothing more than to push my buttons or just see how much she can get away with. I admit sometimes I just give in and let it go. Idle threats make for a long night. But when I take action and follow-through, things seem to get better.

Consistency is about being strong and standing firm. Even if our partner is not on board and things are more relaxed at their place it is still important to teach your children that there are consequences for their behavior.

Discipline teaches our children that there is a consequence for their actions, it teaches self-control, and it reinforces our love for them. Keep minor misdeeds and bad behavior from escalating to major outbursts by standing firm and being consistent.

5 Replies to “Co-Parenting – Disciplining Children”

  1. It is hard at the end of the night. One of my kids pushes hard and I do give in myself. Her dad cuts the kids no slack so I often feel the need to make this a place of peace. Balance is hard some days.

  2. I completely do the same thing. I think we still need to choose our battles at times. I also think that we need to evaluate the rules we set from time to time as they grow… but it is hard to coparent because from my experience my ex won’t even talk to me. I usually have to spend a couple days hitting the reset button on my daughter after getting her back from moms’.

  3. I have to hit that reset button also and I can plan on a melt down after an extended amount of time.

    We just need to stand with God in taking care of our kids.

    Praying for all of us.

  4. This has been extremely difficult for me. I am blessed with joint custody, however the kids’ mother has a mental disorder and refuses to obtain treatment. This particular disorder causes a lack of consistency or follow through. Their mother always has a million projects going on but completes none of them. It makes coparenting impossible. Even the parenting coordinator told her she has no idea what coparenting really is. No matter how many experts tell her to try this or that, she never considers their views. It’s a central component to her disorder. She knows it all about everything. And yet, while I am not an expert, I try to take in as much advice and facts before I make a decision. Just as God has called men to be able to teach(1 Timothy 3:1-7), I believe we must be teachable ourselves. I pray for the wisdom of God in coparenting. Thanks Jason. I stumbled on your website, and just when I needed some direction.

  5. Me & my ex don’t have any communication when he’s not getting his own way. We went to mediation once and the next day he started making up his own rules, once again. The whole reason in going was for the kids benefit, to get on the same page about the kids, for the kids. It’s so bad he’ll use the kids to hurt me. On a weekend he’s supposed to have them he’ll ship them off to their friends houses and not let me know. He knows I worry, like any good parent would. When I cant get ahold of them ill have panic attacks. I’ve now had to make the kids responsible for letting me know where they are since dealing with their dad is not an option. I don’t really like doing this, I feel like its putting them in the middle but I don’t have any other solutions! Oh and I completely hear you on “hitting the reset button.” Nice to know I’m not alone in feeling this way!

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