The rough translation of an old proverb is: `When two fight the third wins`. The wise mind which put these words together was definitely not thinking of a family of three and the scenario of two parents arguing because there is nothing in it for the third one here. Parents say they would do anything for their children and we all are struggling for this every day of our lives. Children have all kind of wishes and desires that need us to fulfill. But there is one thing we may never think of as a gift even if it is more than that. It is the gift of a lifetime. And this is a happy family. Those who have it sometimes don’t appreciate it and those who don’t – long for it.
Two eyes are helplessly watching your faces who express anything but love and safety and they seem to keep the score for yelling and reproach. If it is okay with you to burst out while your child is there and watches this traumatizing show, you should now this has to change forever.
Some couples decide not to argue when their children are present and this is a very good thing. But when they accidentally run into such a thing they hurt as they are not used to this. It is not always possible to save his eyes of a marital fight but as soon as that happens he should be explained that parents do this sometimes and their love for each other and for him doesn’t change.
If the child does not react it doesn’t mean he is not affected by the fights that become a habit. He rather got used to them and apparently adapted. Prolonged tension is likely to cause psychological problems with the child. And usually these fights will turn into explosive bursts eventually; that is why try and keep the voices down for the child’s sake. He will understand that parents love each other in spite of their different opinions.
Unfortunately parents who let inappropriate words come out are models for their children. When they calm down and regret having made their children a part of that it is too late. These children are likely to become stressed, insecure, introverted, social misfits and behavior disordered. They will learn that aggressiveness is the key for conflict and will behave the same.
Children should not have to choose another room or something else to do until the fight is over, they shouldn’t run to get help of another adult, they shouldn’t get hurt either physically or emotionally, they shouldn’t be the ones to teach parents how to control anger. They are a gift for their parents and should be treated this way. Even if no family is perfect they have the right to and they deserve the gift of their lifetime: a loving environment.