What do you do when your child complains to you about your spouse? I will not be addressing serious issues, like abuse. I’m referring to more ordinary complaints. For example, my son Shon and my husband have always enjoyed listening to a variety of music together. When Shon was about 11 years old, he decided that he only wanted to listen to Christian music, but he failed to tell my husband that.
Shon complained to me about Tom playing non Christian records when Shon was trying to avoid them. I said, “Your dad loves you and wants you to be happy. So just suggest other fun things to do when he suggests listening to records.” Then, in private, I explained the situation to Tom. Shon then worked on expressing his feelings to Tom, and Tom showed respect for Shon’s preferences.
When our child complains to us about our spouse, we must be careful not to get drawn into their negativity. Instead, we should encourage them to share their feelings with the person they have a complaint about.
Questions for meditation and discussion: (1) How do you handle it when your child complains to you about your husband? What are the results? (2) Have you ever been sucked into your child’s emotions without hearing your husband’s perspective? What happened?
Application homework: When your child complains to you about your husband, listen respectfully but then suggest that the two of you discuss it with your husband, and do so. Write about how it went.