In most cases, it is preferable to have rules that are similar in both co-parent households. That said, children will often understand that the environments are different. When both homes have similar routines, children can easily adjust and benefit from the stability, but it can be hard to have the exact same rules across the board. There will always be some inconsistencies, and once these are recognized, the children will likely take advantage.
When there are discrepancies in parenting, children may find ways to pin one parent against the other. You may find that your sweet little child may take this position because it has the power to upset the parent or manipulate to get what they want. For example, if your child says “daddy lets me stay up late” you might say something like “at our house, the rules are different, and we go to bed at 8.”
When parents work to present a united front as they parent, the children are less likely to pin parents against each other. They will also know what to expect from their parents. To begin this process, parents can discuss ideas and concerns, overlapping parenting styles when possible.
Divorce can be complicated, and finding the co-parenting balance can make things even more difficult. Click here to read more about a family law attorney in Beaverton OR who advocates for families.