Parental conflicts can cause lasting damage to kids

Children who witness parental conflicts can be at risk of developing stress-related emotional issues and anxiety

Children who witness parental conflicts can be at risk of developing stress-related emotional issues and anxiety. While it is normal for children to experience their parents arguing from time to time, too much arguing can have a negative effect on children. Many parents are unaware of how relationship skills come from parents first, so ensuring these experiences are good is vital to kiddie development and well-being. Modest arguments may not have any negative effects on children but in some cases, if relationships are being impaired children will feel the brunt of it. It doesn’t matter if they see it first-hand or overhear it as the result is the same overall. 
Children are children after all and they are highly aware of what goes on around them even when you may think they aren’t paying attention. A few little arguments won’t damage your child but if you are doing more shouting than talking, it is easy to assume your kiddie may get upset. Even when kids don’t say they are upset they can be and therein comes a problem when your child won’t talk about their concerns or worries. Suddenly, they are holding back, and this affects their mental health and well-being. 
Here are a few tips on resolving conflict in the home:
  • No shouting rule - Make this a priority at home and follow a no shouting rule. This should be adopted by all the family as if you have been shouting too much at your partner or vice versa usually your kid will be yelling too. Decide that there is no yelling allowed but that everyone should be open to discussions. You can even suggest a family meeting every week to work through the conflicts at home. 
  • Discuss after bedtime - If you and your partner need to discuss things wait until the kids are in bed and asleep. Any argument you wanted to have earlier can wait and you don’t need to shout or be aggressive in any way. Sit down and go through your grievances maturely for your children’s sake and you will be surprised how well you feel after an honest chat. 
  • Talk to your kids - Children will blame themselves if their parents are fighting especially if it started because you both couldn’t agree on something related to the kids care. Now is the time to talk and tell your kid that you and your partner are sorry for the rows. Promise to work on it and that you will be better from now on. Don’t dismiss their feelings of sadness as they are probably quite upset over the shouting and offer ways to make it up to them. 
  • Work on your relationship - If you are arguing a lot with your partner perhaps, take a moment to consider what is wrong and why you are arguing so much. Is it a habit due to the stress of raising kids or are you both unhappy? You need to sort this out as no relationship should be filled with constant arguments. It isn’t good for you and it isn’t good for the kids either. Take a break together, go for a meal and reconnect again before promising that they rows are a thing of the past for your children’s sake. 
Written by Emma Hayes staff writer at Family Friendly HQ.

Emma Hayes

Emma Hayes is a busy mum to two girls aged 17 and 11 and is married to her childhood sweetheart.

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