Do you sometimes argue in front of the kids? We’re all human, and anyone who’s ever been in a relationship can tell you that conflicts sometimes arise. The way in which you and your partner handle these conflicts can have lasting health effects on your kids.
A recent study done in the UK suggests that the way in which we argue can impact our children’s health. Arguments that are deemed “destructive” – for example involve walking away, slamming doors, ignoring one another – can negatively affect a child’s health. Being exposed to this type of arguing can lead to stomachaches, headaches, long term mental health issues such as depression, as well as reduced growth.
Don’t be alarmed. This doesn’t mean children shouldn’t be exposed to any type of arguing. Children who were exposed to arguments that were deemed “constructive” – for example parents worked through their conflicts respectfully – reacted positively.
It’s important that we model for children the proper way to handle conflicts. Continue to be respectful when in an argument, no matter how difficult it may be. Avoid name-calling and other hurtful words. If one or both of you need a break, walk away. Resolve to discuss the issue again when emotions aren’t running so high. Above all, remember the love you have for each other and your family.
Take a moment during an argument to reflect on who is witnessing the argument, and how your behavior could impact him or her. It is a powerful way to center yourself. It serves as a reminder that we are the greatest teachers in our child’s lives!
The information provided on our blog is not meant to replace the care or guidance of your medical provider. If you have specific questions please call or see your professional health care provider.