When Parents Disagree--How to Build Family Teamwork


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The whole family can feel the tension that builds when parents don't agree in their child-rearing techniques. Children catch on fast, too. Little Jill will soon learn which parent to go to when she wants to sleep over at some friends house. Carl will learn how he can get Mommy so mad at Daddy that Dad will let him have that bike he has been wanting--just to make Mom mad.

Parents need to work together to build family teamwork and togetherness. Not only for the healthy development of their children, but also for the strength and love of their marriage. The following are 11 suggestions for changing any chaotic family into a harmonious household.

What to Do to Build Teamwork

  1. Communicate

    Communicate with your spouse on a regular basis and also with your family. Have weekly family councils or forums where all family members express themselves freelyand openly, without the fear of criticism. Talk to your children about future plans or problems and explain to them why you do certain things they may find unfair. By allowing your children to take an active part in family business they will be more likely to want to help with whatever problem that needs to be solved.

  2. Listen

    This sounds basic, but it is often overlooked. When you are listening, don't think about what response you are going to give, rather, ask yourself why your spouse or child feels the way he or she does Listening is one of the most powerful ways you can show that you care about the other person. Children, especially, need to know that they are important, and this can be shown through active listening.

  3. Share responsibility

    Explain that if your family is indeed a team, then they must all do their part in the family. Discuss with your husband what you should expect from each child and then tell the children what you would both would like and what you expect.

  4. Assign specific chores

    This will teach your children to have pride in their work and learn responsibility. Teach them that they are all accountable for certain chores.

  5. Establish routines

    Routines help children to feel safe. Maintain a consistent schedule that you can adhere to. By having a schedule both parents and kids will know what to expect and when.

  6. Have quality time

    True quality time involves doing things with your child, such as reading her favorite book or helping her with homework. Sitting in front of the television doesn't usually consist of quality time.

  7. Seek spiritual experiences

    Attending a church, temple or mosque with your children helps you all to realize that no one goes at it alone. Also, read spiritual works together.

  8. Have fun together

    At least once a month plan and go on a family outing. Consider going on a trip to the woods, the museum or the zoo. Through having fun together as a family you reinforce to your children that teamwork also means you play together. Remember that a family that works together and plays together--stays together.

  9. Keep work separate from home

    Try not to bring work home with you. This doesn't mean you should shut your family off from your work life but it does mean you should concentrate on your family when you are home.

  10. Take time off for yourself

    Just because you have a family doesn't mean you shouldn't ever focus on yourself. Do what you enjoy once and a while such as a soothing bath or curling up to a good book.

  11. Have a routine date night with your spouse

    Building teamwork with your family starts with you and your husband being a good team. Agree on your dates not to talk about work or children, but focus on yourselves as individuals. Weekly date nights will help keep the romance alive in your marriage and will also show your children that your relationship is important.


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