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How should you deal with a Disneyland dad?

There is a myth that exists out there that perfect parents both agree on the exact same styles of parenting. The truth is that in most households in Los Angeles, you will find that each parent's ideas tend to differ (at least slightly). In fact, study information shared by shows that as many as 90 percent of parents actually argue more after having kids. If parenting differences were a factor in the dissolution of your marriage, you may see them begin to differ even more once you are divorced. 

What if your spouse goes as far as becoming a "Disneyland dad"? Those are the parents that make themselves out to the fun ones, constantly going on trips, giving the kids whatever they want, and imposing no household rules, all the while making the other parent out to be the strict disciplinarian. The temptation is to try and follow suit and try to match trip-for-trip and gift-for-gift. Yet parenting experts advise against this, as they do you criticizing your ex-spouse for doing it (or even going so far as to punish the kids for things that happen while in his or her custody). 

In such a situation, you are counseled not to react. What your ex does is out of your control, and you allowing it to frustrate your own parenting efforts is counterproductive. The reason you are encouraged to remain consistent with your parenting is because while the kids might get temporary enjoyment out of what your ex gives, they soon come to crave the stability offered by a strong parental figure. When your ex is unwilling to offer that for fear of it upsetting his or her status as "the fun one," your kids will quickly only look to you when they need guidance and direction. 

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