Avoid friction and conflict with your adult children

If your adult child leaves the parental home and starts living with a partner, the relationship with your son or daughter will change. The relationship with your child will often improve in a positive way. Because by living together, plus experiencing personal responsibility, the parents are also better understood (retrospectively). However, there are risks that can disrupt the good harmony. Prevent unnecessary irritations, problems, disagreements, or even worse, arguments with your older children.

Parental influence

When your children are still very young, as a father and mother you have a lot of influence on the little ones and they basically do what you, as a loving parent, want to happen. As the offspring grows older, parental influence and control will increasingly be shared with other influential people such as the babysitter, daycare center staff, primary school teacher, friends, grandparents, neighbors, uncles, aunts, other parents and people at the sports club.

Influence of cold side

The moment your child gets into a relationship and then starts living together, even more changes. Because the influence of the partner with whom your daughter or son enters into an affair is of course great. You will therefore have to take into account that the son-in-law or daughter-in-law, and perhaps also the parents-in-law, can have a major effect on your own child. That can of course be beneficial if it has a positive influence. Perhaps your son will become an understanding guy with life experience more quickly since he has responsibility and the status of head of the family. And your daughter, for example, is becoming more careful with money, thanks to that frugal son-in-law. But less pleasant developments can also occur with the in-laws, causing disagreements that are difficult to repair.

Negative influence

Parents sometimes feel that the cold side has a wrong influence on their child. They feel that their son or daughter has changed in a negative way and the in-laws are blamed for this. Always remember that your child is between two fires, and it is very difficult to choose sides, because he or she does not want to deny either his parents or his relationship. Also realize that if your child is really forced to take sides in a conflict, you as parents could end up getting the short end of the stick. It can therefore sometimes be wise not to express certain resentment, or perhaps only to bring it up at a more appropriate time.

Equal monks, equal hoods

A good relationship with daughter, son, daughter-in-law or son-in-law is often a matter of common sense. If you have multiple children who are married or living together, try to treat them as equally as possible, just as you always tried to do when they were small.

And although you are not obliged to provide explanations and explanations , if things sometimes turn out differently, it is often smart to discuss why you (temporarily) help or favor one person more than the other. So that misunderstandings and accusations are prevented.

Babysitting grandchildren

So if you ever babysit the grandchildren, do so evenly among your children. Don’t say no to one child and yes to another. Of course, you don’t have to keep any accounts, but you should give them the feeling that you are sharing your attention and babysitting skills equally. And if things are temporarily different, bring it up: I will babysit more often for the time being. Because of that, you certainly understand.

Money issues

When it comes to financial support for one of your children, be alert to the consequences and possible conflict situations. Don’t just give a large amount of money to one of them without any explanation to the others. Especially not if that one has gotten into financial problems through their own actions and your other descendants behave frugally and exemplary with their income.

Visitors, birthdays, etc.

Here too, you have to divide the attention equally, although your daughter in Australia will understand that you sometimes have to skip a grandchild’s birthday party. And if you do a job for one person, don’t say no to the other without any explanation.

The month of December

With whom do we celebrate Saint Nicholas and where do we spend Christmas? And then there is New Year’s Eve. If you have several children, this is not always an easy task. There is no recipe to ensure everything runs smoothly. But you can prevent misunderstandings and irritations by coordinating matters well in advance, so that no wrong expectations arise.

Getting away is also a solution

And perhaps it would be a tip to spend Christmas with your partner in a cozy hotel from now on. You don’t have to bring loads of groceries into your home, no unrest, no worries, just enjoy. And others secretly look inside to see how busy they are. Who knows how much fun and freedom you will provide for your children.

Preventing annoyance

Make sure that things do not get out of hand and identify in a timely manner the things that (could) irritate each other. Also remember that you don’t gain anything from being right as long as the other person doesn’t admit that you are right. In principle, do not interfere in their lives or in the way they raise their children. Although of course you never have to ignore your conscience. In such a case, it is important that you raise a problem in a calm, diplomatic manner and preferably not in an accusatory tone.
And always have that conversation verbally, preferably in private, and especially not in writing by email, WhatsApp, etc., because then misunderstandings can easily arise that are difficult to repair.

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