Nobody would like to have parents who constantly fight, but it’s normal for parents to disagree sometimes. It is even healthy for your parents to differ and argue over things. If the fights are not constant, and there is no abuse, physical fights, or injuries, and provided that they make up after the fight, you don’t have to worry about these adults. In fact, normal couples argue about seven times a day–it does not mean they hate each other.
But, as their child, you may be confused about what to do when you see them fight–don’t worry. In this article, you will learn about why parents fight and how to deal with your parent’s fighting.
Should I Care If My Parents Are Fighting?
It’s important to know that it’s the parents fighting, not you. So, you should stay away from the fight and go somewhere else in the house.
While your intervention is inappropriate in most situations, some dangerous circumstances may require you to do it.
If the fight turns into abuse, it’s good to intervene. In these life-threatening situations, the abused victim might require assistance from a third person.
However, that doesn’t mean you should walk in the middle of the fight because it can be dangerous. If the fighting has become threatening, such as;
- Physical abuse, like pushing or hitting
- Property destruction
- Verbal abuse and threats
- Making threats
Call a neighbor or a relative, or dial 9-1-1 or any emergency service in your region. You might be troubled that your parents will get annoyed with you for calling the police.
Keep in mind that it’s better to be safe than sorry. It is also not your fault to involve the police. It is entirely their fault for putting you in that complex situation.
Why Do Parents Fight So Much?
Conflicts are normal in life. When parents fight, they do it mostly because they are stressed, tired or their day was terrible, and they lose their patience. They may be fighting today because of these reasons.
Everyone loses their temper now and then. Sometimes when your parents fight, they act just like kids. They, too, get upset. It’s important to know that parents do have arguments and fights now and then.
How Do You Stop A Fight?
You might be wondering whether there’s anything that you can do to stop them from fighting. Unfortunately, as much as you would like your parent’s fight to stop, it is not guaranteed that you will stop them from fighting.
The bitter truth is that you cannot make them stop. You cannot also control how they decide to go about their healing. There is nothing much you can do to make them understand how you are feeling and hopefully stop on their own.
Don’t put that pressure on yourself because you will carry a responsibility that doesn’t belong to you. You will start blaming yourself when they fight because you think you could have stopped it.
So, it is best to stay away during the fight. Instead, wait until everything has calmed down, and then tell your parents you want to discuss something troubling you.
What To Do When Your Mom And Dad Are Fighting
Seeing your parents fight often can be a really horrifying situation and a harrowing experience to cope with. Feeling stressed, worried, sad, and even angry is normal.
While there are many things you cannot control during the fight, you can take several helpful steps to cope with this challenging situation and feel a bit better.
Here are several tips that can help you cope with emotions during the fight.
Stay Out Of The Argument
First, you should avoid getting in the middle of the fight. You may want to stop it, but it’s not your work. Both parents are adults who should sort out their problems between themselves.
Get Some Distance
Hearing your parents fight while shouting and calling one another bad names can hurt.
To prevent eavesdropping and limit your participation in the fight, go outside or any other place around the home. Leave the surrounding where the fighting is taking place until everything calms down.
If the fight is, for instance, in the kitchen, go to your bedroom. Excuse yourself if your parents start a fight during dinner and go to another room.y
You could listen to music or play a game with earphones, so you can’t hear the fighting. Do whatever it takes to shout down the sound of your parents fighting because it will just make you feel more distressed.
Talk To A Trusted Adult
If you fear the fighting is going beyond and you’re worried one might get hurt, talk to a trusted adult family member, a relative, a friend, or a counselor. You can text them about your parents fighting or call them.
How to Deal With Your Parents Fighting
After the situation has calmed down;
1. Talk To Your Parents
After everything has calmed down, you can tell your parents you want to have a discussion. You can do this at that moment or wait until the following day. You can talk to one or both of them about your feelings. It would be best to discuss it with whomever you feel most comfortable with.
Consider whether the problem is something your parents can talk about in front of you or not.
2. Express Your Feelings
Let your parents know it hurts to see them fight. Be straightforward about how the fighting is affecting you. Parents sometimes don’t realize the effect of fighting on their children.
Express your feelings when the fight is over. Don’t bring it up during the fight because it can worsen the situation if they feel guilty. To raise the chances of having a smooth discussion try to communicate effectively. You can start by explaining to them what you observe from your viewpoint.
You want to help them understand your feelings. Reach out to another trustworthy adult if you feel afraid to talk to them or if their fights are abusive.
This will help them understand your worries and hopefully reconsider their actions and make some changes. For instance, you might tell them your heart starts pounding every time you hear them fighting, and you are worried they are going to get a divorce.
3. Don’t Take Sides
Try to avoid taking sides! Your parents should fight their own battles. If you take sides, you put yourself in the middle of the war. Be neutral in their arguments to evade unnecessary suffering. You won’t find yourself in the middle of a fight you never asked for.
4. Involve Someone You Trust
If you aren’t sure if you should talk to your parents or what you will say to them, or you have talked to them without seeing changes, try to find an adult you can trust. This can be a counselor or a religious leader for advice.
5. Understand Your Parents
Your parents don’t mean what they say when they are fighting. When you are angry, you sometimes say things you don’t mean or regret later.
You’ve most likely fought with someone and said something terrible, but after you calmed down, you undoubtedly had to say sorry and explain that you didn’t mean those unkind things.
The same case applies to your parents. They will sometimes also say unkind things to each other that they don’t mean deep down. Hopefully, they will ask for forgiveness almost immediately after the fight.
6. Set Boundaries With Your Parents
You must protect yourself if they are in denial that there is a problem or don’t consider seeking help or seeing a counselor. You can set several boundaries to lessen the effects their fights have on you. Find ways to get out of the situation if they start fighting, and be clear on why you plan to do so.
Setting boundaries can be tricky because your parents have authority over you. If they disapprove, request a compromise. For example, you can request that only one of your parents at a time attends your extracurricular events or request to be exempted from family dinners until there’s healing.
If they still bar you from setting boundaries to protect or disregard those you have agreed upon, involve another trusted adult or a counselor for support. It’s perfectly okay to ask for help.
7. Remember, It Isn’t Your Fault
Parents may fight because of many things. From money issues, work, and even about something related to you. Even though you’re the topic of your parents’ fight, it is not your fault they’re fighting.
They have made a mature decision to start this argument, and it’s their fault that they are not handling it well. Understand that your parent’s fights don’t essentially mean that they will break up. Even if they eventually get divorced, it won’t be your fault.
Remember this as you try to cope with your parents fighting. Otherwise, it will be almost impossible to manage.
Don’t blame yourself for the problems your parents have since you are the best gift your parents will ever have. They might not show it regularly, but they love you more than they are annoyed with each other.
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