When disagreements happen

Voices were raised, we argued due to differences in opinion, in the car on the way to lunch from church today.

K tried to lighten the situation in between by saying, “Mummy, can you stop a while and see this…”, I was too occupied with the heated situation to look at what he was referring to.

Hb and I both stewed in stony silence during lunch. I said a silent prayer, and things were resolved during lunch.

But the little one did not forget.

He drew this when we got home after lunch. Told me that he was busy and needed to do this before his nap.

Img 1859052012

He then gave this to hb.

I realized what we have done in the afternoon, and what impact it might have on a little one’s mind.

It does get hard to be a positive role model for my child all the time.

It’s probably time to tell him before bed-time today, “Remember this morning, when mummy and daddy were shouting at each other? We are sorry that you got a little upset hearing it, mummies and daddies sometimes don’t agree with one another. But even when they quarrel, they will still love one another, and we definitely still love you.”

It’s important to say things like that to him so that he knows that disagreements are normal in a relationship, and we have both made the effort to resolved it. But even more important that I meant every word I said.

So I gave hb a big hug this evening.


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  1. I agree its inevitable for couples to argue and it’s hard to catch ourselves from doing it in front of our children. Xander, like K, will try to lighten the situation in his little way too. He would always wipe my tears and say “I love you Mummy, don’t be sad.” Immediately I will feel guilty for making him worried.

    You have a really sensible boy there, Rachel. Your reassurance to him will definitely help to ease his worries.
    Liza´s last blog post ..Tasty Thursday: Famous 49 Katong Laksa

    Rachel Reply:

    Xander is such a sweet and perceptive boy at his age, to know how to comfort u at the right time.

  2. It’s interesting how the episode triggered K to draw something like that. It really provides a lot of insight to what goes on in a child’s mind when the parents quarrel / disagree. I agree with you – it’s important to explain to a child that the love of the parents remains intact despite all these things. Glad you guys were able to quickly resolve this one, with some help no doubt from K. 😛
    June´s last blog post ..On going green – an interview with the founders of Green Living

    Rachel Reply:

    Sometimes I think I underestimate a child’s understanding of relationships. But it got me to be more aware and sensitive of his feelings especially when hb and I encounter disagreements.

  3. Truly a sensible boy you can be proud of. And it’s wonderful to know that nothing is too small for prayers to be answered.
    Adeline´s last blog post ..To grouse or not to grouse.

    Rachel Reply:

    He’s got a sensitive little soul…and u are right, that nothing too small can be brought to God through our prayers to Him

  4. Rach, you’ve really got a sweetheart who has a sensitive soul. Hubby always reminds me not to raise my voice in front of Sophie too. Between us, he’s usually more calm and collected while I’m the drama mama at home. I do agree that disagreements do happen and we just got to watch what we say so that we don’t break and tear each other down.
    Susan´s last blog post ..Choose Happiness

    Rachel Reply:

    Yes, we really need to exhibit more self control especially in front of our kids. I have learnt to soften the situation / disagreements by keeping quiet, or not responding in anger. Most of the time, it does help, when either one party makes that effort to show more self control during disagreements.

  5. So true what you wrote about. And your boy is extremely sweet and sensitive. =)
    Kless´s last blog post ..The Esprit-Clothes-On-The-Roll Period

    Rachel Reply:

    Very sensitive at times, and he tend to cry quite easily. Sometimes I wonder if there is something I should be doing to toughen him up.

  6. Sigh. Yes this is a great reminder. Recently Layla told me “I always hear arguments between you two.” That night I told Alf, let’s save the disagreements for after the kids’ bedtime. He reckoned that having kids listen to arguments was OK, as long as it was “respectful.” That’s ideal but hard to achieve.

    Rachel Reply:

    Totally agree, how do we keep it “respectful” when there is anger/frustration involved? It’s best to save the disagreements when the kids are sleeping or not in their presence, but situations do spiral out of control sometimes, and it can hard to do.

  7. Hubs and I also have disagreements over how to parent Allysa. I think I’m more of the one that wants to “do-things-the-right-way-if-not-Ally-will-turn-up-bratful-in-the-future-sorta” of Mum and Aloy is the “happy go lucky and everything will be a-ok!” Dad. That drives me nuts coz he always forgets our rules and then he blames me for the “nagging”. Anyway, we had a recent episode over the weekend and finally, he suggested we should go for marriage and parenting counselling to recouncil our differences and make us better spouses and parents too. I guess, he has finally acknowledge we do need a professional third party to help which I am looking forward to. Sometimes, I feel that it’s difficult to solve conflicts ourselves because talks can turn into arguements when disagreements happen. I guess it’s good that we take actions to solve a rising problem in our r/s then to let it stay and live with it.
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    Rachel Reply:

    I think most moms are the ones who thrive on routine for their kids, and want to more control in managing our kids, I am exactly like u too, Yvonne. My hb and I do have some differences in how we do things, but ultimately we both want the best for Kyle. I think many times its also a result of very different upbringing. I think in a relationship we all need to take things in our stride, and make a point to nip problems in the bud, before it gets tough to manage as a couple.

  8. It’s interesting that Kyle reacted that way. He didn’t strike me as being very sensitive, but there you go. A great reminder that we need to be more mindful of how we treat each other in front of the kids.
    Pamela Tan´s last blog post ..A Mumthesaurus speaks colourful language!

    Rachel Reply:

    Indeed. There is this other side of Kyle which he doesn’t really show when interacting with his friends or in a social context.

  9. I think if I was in your shoes, I would have cried buckets and buckets of tears upon seeing that drawing!

    Sometimes we don’t realise that little things we do doesn’t only affect us ‘two’. After we became a family – there is another person in the equation. We often neglect their feelings because perhaps we are trying to nurse our own, not thinking of the impact it may have on the children.

    As much as we try to nurture a ‘bond’, it is also this bond that makes them so much more sensitive to our feelings.

    Kyle is such a sweet heart. Remember when you commented on Caden being of a similar nature when he threw that temper tantrum? You’re right… I can practically envision him reacting the same way, too – perhaps in a slightly different way. He associates happiness with Mummy, Daddy and him being together, shown in the way that he always insists on holding both our hands recently. He always makes me wait for Daddy and vice versa so that he can walk in between us.

    Unadulterated love? Perhaps.
    Regina´s last blog post ..Manic Monday: Poked, prodded and Jabbed.

    Rachel Reply:

    Didn’t cry, but the heart ached :(
    Felt really really bad, and I made a mental note that I needed to exhibit more self-control moving on.

    Caden is very perceptive at his age, I recalled u told me before how he would make sure that u and daddy held hands after a small disagreement…and I find that really sensitive for his age at 16 months! We really can’t underestimate these little ones and how much they understand things, especially when it concerns the two most important people in his life.