National Association of Marriage Enhancement

When Your Parents are Parenting Your Parenting

There are three things you must always keep in mind when it comes to this subject: Parents and in-laws are a blessing, and the Bible says we are to honor them. The Bible also tells us to receive wisdom from our elders. Those three being said, it is not always easy to deal with our parents, especially when it comes to parenting our own children. We want to approach this subject gingerly and with caution because we know how tender feelings can be in the difficult position you may be in.  Here are nine tips we have that we really hope will help you!


1. Always attempt to be sincerely thankful for their advice. At least your parent cares about the wellbeing of your child and wants to help.

2. Putting your foot down does not have to mean stomping and kicking up dirt. Tone down the drama.

3. Do not bring in other family and friends into it to strengthen your side. No one likes to be ganged up on.

4. Make efforts to occasionally ask for your parent’s advice. They want to feel useful and helpful to you. Besides you may be surprised at some of their wisdom.

5. Let them know of times that you used their advice and how in hindsight, you were so glad you did.

6. Never ever say or imply that they did a poor job raising you (or your spouse). No need to be hurtful.

7. If they are disregarding your decisions as a parent (what the children are allowed or not allowed to do, how the children are to be disciplined, etc), you need to make sure to tell them and let them know how important it is to you that they listen in order that your children will respect the rules.

8. Pick and choose your battles. If everything is a fight, life will be miserable.

9. Always, always, always tell them how much you love them. You don’t know how much longer you have with them.