Should we always speak of our childrens' other parent positively?
If the other parent is mostly absent, irresponsible, dishonest etc. should he/she still always be spoken of, to the children, in a positive light? or do our children deserve to know more?
Absolutely positively! By doing that we teach our children not to speak ill of others.
Hi MM...if you're speaking of when we are around our children, then yes, without a doubt. Doing so teaches our children that we respect our spouse, and regard them as equals. To disparage or insult them plants seeds of doubt in a young mind, and leads to erosion of authority and trust.
To your adult close friends - you can dish out the dirt over martinis and/or Haagen-Dazs.
In public, speak the truth, the truth, the truth! Or please don't speak.
To your adult children, you can take the conversation where they lead, or confide in them honestly but with deep consideration of the effects.
To your young/minor children, answer their questions honestly and openly, but do the same self-editting you'd do if you were on the phone in front of your 6 year old gabbing about how your boss is this or the feds or this or that neighbor are so @#$! annoying or whatever. You know you wouldn't go all Richard Pryor in front of a kid (I hope!!), nor would you want your bundle of joy to go about the neighborhood innocently repeating your words.
Imagine THOSE chance meetings while gardening or getting the mail....can we say "awwwwkwuurrrrd"!
Respect your children's feelings, and the fact that "daddy/mommy" may be a very different person than the mother@#$! who was selfish, unfaithful, "emotionally unavailable", a deadbeat - et cetera.
Save the bitching and mud-slinging for the bar stool...uh...unless you're in public office. Hell, there's a good chance that there's a handful at same bar scratching and/or stabbing backs!
Would you want to be seen in the same light as a sleazy politician? Right. So, take the high road.
I have remained positive for my daughter. Whether her dad and I are married or not - he will always be her daddy and I will always hope that he does right by her. I am always here for her when she needs to talk, but I don't want to add negative comments and make her feel torn. My priority is her health - emotionally and physically. I will do whatever is in my power to help contribute to her happiness.
We should never use children to be negative so of course we should unless that parent is abusive in any way, then we should take whatever steps to keep them from them and explain why.
Either speak positively or don't say anything. There is nothing positive about running down a child's absent parent. They know they are being slighted and if the custodial parent berates the absent parent, the child will get confused but also will likely become defensive and defend the absent parent.
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