Unified Parenting- Don’t Tell….

Most people find this video hysterical.
I find it disturbing.
When I saw this it reminded me of a parent on the sidelines of my son’s football field who I overheard tell their daughter, “Don’t tell mom”.
Maybe I’m old fashioned, or from another planet,
but I don’t think this is a good idea.
Why not?
‘It’s harmless’ you say?
 
Well, I guess if no one gets harmed in the process, I suppose we’d have to assume it really is
No Big Deal, right?
Wrong.
Saying this one sentence to your kids (whether you are parenting in the same household or not) sends the wrong message. It teaches your child that secret keeping is fine. It tells them that bending the rules, being dishonest, and going behind someone’s back is easy and acceptable. It teaches kids to avoid confrontation (whether it be with a spouse or a parent). Simply put, it promotes avoiding communication and honesty.)
Not only does it send mixed signals on teaching right and wrong,
 which kids should be learning at a young age,
IT CAN ALSO BACKFIRE!
Picture This:
-The party you told your teenager he couldn’t go to? He’s going, and won’t be telling you.
-The no-sex-before-marriage discussion? Out the window-she just won’t tell you.
-When she wants to borrow the car to hit the mall, but you say ‘No, go only to the library’?
They’re at the mall…
they won’t be telling you and they’ll bring back a pile of books to make it look good.
(Not to mention, who wants to get into the arguments of, “MOM (or DAD) LETS ME!”
And…
aren’t just old sayings.

Successful parenting begins with solid boundaries and if those boundaries are constantly changing, kids never really learn the things they should. Nor do they understand that no means no and yes means yes.
Whether or not you are parenting your children together in the same house or not, the most important thing you can do as parents is to be unified in your discipline, habits and communication.
Never (if you can help it) tell your child ‘Don’t tell Mom (or Dad)’, unless it is a genuine surprise or gift.

Open lines of communication between children and parents is key to a healthy childhood and upbringing, so the next time you feel like doing something you don’t want your spouse to know about, save your child the confusion and do it without your them around, or find the courage to discuss what you want with your spouse.
(A special note of warning: With very small children there is one other very important thing to be aware of. In the world of sex-offenders, the most common request from the perpetrator is, “Don’t tell your mom or dad’. So, it’s just another reason not to teach young children to keep secrets from their own parents, since it confuses them to believe it’s okay. And, we all know, that this is one type of secret we never want a child to keep from us.)
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