Have you wondered how mixed messages from parents affect your child?
According to Mr Sam Kuna, president of the Singapore Association for Counselling, mixed messages from parents (disagreement) can be a learning point. If parents can disagree agreeably and explain to their children on their different views, children will learn that disagreement does not equate to being disrespectful.
Parenting specialist Sarah Chua said that parents should also show maturity and not engage in shouting matches in front of children.
See: Bryna Singh, “When is it okay to side with your child instead of your spouse?”, The Straits Times, 6 August 2017
Mixed messages from parents during and after the divorce
As a divorce lawyer in Singapore, I have seen many parents sending mixed messages to their children. For some, their differences in parenting led to the breakdown of the marriage.
During the divorce proceedings, some parents would shower more concern and spend more time with their child in their bid to win custody/ care and control of their child. I have also come across parents who “brainwash” their children so as to build a case against the other parent.
From a family lawyer’s point of view, this is unhealthy. Children should not be used as pawns in divorce proceedings.
I always advise my clients that there is no “winning” or “losing” when it comes to family law. Family law is unique in the sense that it is all about solving the problems.
The divorce will not lead to you losing the child. Every child has 7 days (or 168 hours) a week. It is a matter of working out an arrangement that will minimize the impact the divorce has on the child and ensure that both parents have sufficient opportunity to bond with the child.
I agree with the views of Mr Kuna and Ms Chua. Despite their disagreements, parents should place the welfare of their child as the foremost priority.
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