Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Have your children cost you any friends?

I set myself very high standards.

Always have.

And when things matter, like parenting, then the importance of reaching those principles is heightened.

This doesn’t mean I expect those around me to reach or even have the same ideals - they’d only disappoint you unwittingly anyway - but I do like to share a lot of common ground with parents that I consider friends.

I am very lucky that my best friend, and many of my close ones, ones that have started families around the same time, have similar parenting ethics and protocols to me.

With consistency, kids’ bedtimes, discipline, freedom, reward and reprimand.

Guess that’s why we are good friends.

But, there are others.

I’m not saying I’m always right – do I really need to? – but there are practices I just don’t agree with, and it means that I become uncomfortable around others that are.

Whilst being first-class at confrontation, I don’t particularly enjoy it, or always have the energy for it, so instead of taking someone to task on something I don’t necessarily agree with, I can simply disengage.

I know that some folks are just not worth reasoning with.

(I’m probably one of them).

I don’t suppose we can predict how our friends might choose to handle parenthood however close we are beforehand, and indeed it’s the same for couples that develop huge differences of parenting opinion, and thus their relationships can suffer too.

Life would be dull if we all agreed on everything, and little fractions can actually add heat and spice to relationships, but when does that become too much?

Guess I actually haven’t fallen out with anyone because of a difference in parenting style, but I have avoided becoming too friendly with people that I suspect that may happen with given time.

How about you?