Disagreements come up in every relationship. It is easy to let your feelings out and fly off the handle when you feel upset with your spouse, but doing so in front of your kids can be detrimental. Kids may feel that they are at the root of the argument, or they may model your behavior and try to use arguing or yelling to solve the problem when they disagree with someone. Instead of raising your tone and fighting in front of your kids, try these solutions:
Call a Time Out
Discussions get heated sometimes and it is easy to get carried away. Sit down with your spouse when you are not riled up and discuss a signal or sentence that you can use when things are heating up and you feel like a time out may help to avoid an argument. Walking away and coming back to the discussion later with a cool head may be more productive and can save your kids from witnessing a nasty argument.
Write Down Your Thoughts
If you feel that something that your spouse said or did is wrong, but you know that it will start an argument or otherwise be in poor taste to bring up in front of the kids, write it down. The conscious action of writing it down may help you to think it through more completely, sympathizing with where they were coming from. Bring your points to your spouse later when the kids aren’t around.
Take It Down a Notch
Instead of saying “I am angry,” try really exploring what your feelings are and picking a better word, like frustrated, hurt, or uncomfortable. Avoid the words “always” and “never” because these basically suck you into the blame game. Keep in mind that every disagreement is a problem to be solved and try to solve each issue as diplomatically as possible.