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          Parenting

          Stop Fighting In Front of the Kids

          October 30, 2002

          Fighting in front of your kids, says Dr. Phil, is nothing short of abuse. Read on before you make the decision to ever do it again.

          • Children learn what they live. Stop and think about what you’re teaching them.
          • What goes through your mind when you do it? How do you justify doing this? Why do you think you’re entitled to fight in front of your kids? You’ve got to look at this and say, “This ain’t workin!” Stop justifying it. The kids are picking up the tab.
          • You have a choice: either vent your impulse or love your children. Those are mutually exclusive. When you fight in front of your kids, you are putting your need to explode ahead of your kids’ best interest and peace of mind.
          • What are you fighting about? What’s your goal when you call each other names? Is it worth trashing your children’s harmony? Can you even remember what was so important last week that you were willing to trample over your children? What “victory” were you looking for? Is it worth it? Do you think your kids think it’s worth it?
          • There are important issues in every marriage that need to be discussed. Turn the volume down to deal with them.
          • Stop being a “right-fighter.” The kids don’t care who’s right. “They want you to shut up,” says Dr. Phil.
          • Don’t say you can’t control your anger. That’s not true. It’s that you don’t control your anger. Have you had fights at your boss’s house? At church? At a restaurant with friends? You don’t do it when you can’t.
          • The only person you control is you. Choose to control your impulses.

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