We all have different parenting styles. However, if one parent likes to shower his or her kids with lavish gifts to the point of spoiling them, and the other parent prefers not to grant his or her child’s every wish, this can be difficult to deal with. If you’re the more conservative parent in this pair, this article could help you deal with the situation. If you’re the other parent — and you know who you are — you might want to consider finding some common ground with your ex in order to provide a more stable and congruent home environment for your kids.
Let’s say that every time dad drops the kids off at your house after their every-other-weekend with him, they come home with big smiles, while toting big ticket presents, like new iPads, a Nintendo Wii U or something else. You might feel like your less-involved ex is getting all the credit for being the best dad, while you are doing the heavy lifting and taking care of the biggest difficulties of being a parent. Don’t think that way. Remember that time is far more valuable to a child than presents. Be the bigger person. Let your children enjoy their presents and their time with dad. Keep in mind that dad’s absence is harder on them than you, and you are giving a gift that goes much deeper than superficial presents.
Here’s another issue you might encounter. Every time your children come home, you find out that while they were at mom’s house, they spent the entire time on the internet or playing video games. Meanwhile, you always try to encourage that they spend their free time more wholesomely. In these cases, there is a knee-jerk tendency to be the “bad cop” and prohibit your kids from using the internet for an entire week. However, this could backfire on you and degrade the good relationship you’ve worked so hard to foster with your children. It’s best to simply focus on being the best parent you can be rather than trying to balance out another parent’s loser parenting style.
At the end of the day, focus on yourself, and if you need professional assistance to help deal with a “bad parent” ex, do not be shy about seeking such help.
Source: The Huffington Post, “How To Deal When Your Ex Is A Disneyland Dad,” Brittany Wong, Oct. 02, 2015