2 YEARS OLD
It’s normal for couples to fight, but it’s important to ensure that your little one isn’t affected by it, reminds DR RICHARD C. WOOLFSON.
It’s normal for couples to ﬁght, but do these so your little one isn’t affected by it.
There is a hardly a couple who doesn’t have arguments, especially when they have kids.
Yet, no child likes to see Mum and Dad ﬁght with each other. Consider the negative impact: First, if you spend too much time squabbling with each other, you’ll have less time for her.
Second, it creates a tense and strained atmosphere at home; and third, she doesn’t want to see the people she loves in dispute.
Here are strategies to help you work things out so your little one won’t get upset.
Keep your ghts away from her
Of course, there will be times when arguments erupt spontaneously between you and your spouse in front of your toddler. Where possible, delay the arguments until she is not around.
Don’t ask your toddler to take sides
She loves both of you, so resist the temptation to draw her into the argument. For example, you may feel like asking her: “Don’t you think I am right?” That question forces her to choose one parent over the other. Leave her out of it.
Reassure her she is safe
diminishes. She may start to fear for her own safety and think to herself: “If Mum and Dad can be horrible to each other, maybe they will be horrible to me, too”. She also fears that you may hurt each other.
Explain that people need to release their feelings
Despite the unpleasantness, the reality is that your two-year-old has to learn to cope with conﬂict and disagreements in her life. She has to learn that virtually everyone bickers sometimes, and that this is a normal – but usually undesirable – part of relationships.
Model good behaviour
If your toddler sees that both of you can have a minor argument and still love each other afterwards, she’ll eventually grasp the concept that love and conﬂict are not mutually exclusive. She will learn that she can care deeply for someone and be annoyed with them at the same time.
Never show physical aggression
Your two-yearold should never see physical aggression – or even threats – between you and your spouse.
She may become afraid to leave the house in case something dreadful happens.
Show your tot that arguments can be resolved by compromise. Teach her that when two people want different things, they can reach a middle-ground through discussion and compromise. And if she learns this from you at home, she’ll be able to use this strategy when disagreeing with her friends.
Explain minor importance
argument, reassure her that the ﬁght doesn’t really mean anything.
Tell her explicitly that although you are both angry, you are disagreeing over a small matter. Make sure she understands this so she isn’t afraid of the conﬂict she has observed.
Resist the temptation to draw her into your argument. For example, you may feel like asking her: “Don’t you think I am right?”