Second Marriage Moment #27 actually occurred before I married my husband. One night he called to tell me his son and his son’s friends were coming to my house to hang out. He told me the expectations he had shared with his son—and I made the mistaken assumption that he told me the rules he’d established so I could follow through and enforce them!
The son and his friends did things my fiance/husband had specifically forbidden and I called the son on it right away, as soon as I saw it transpire. In my culture, you see a wrong committed and you correct it then and there. It doesn’t matter who’s around. There’s no yelling or anger, you stop the behavior, re-establish expectations, and carry on.
Also in my culture: parents back each other up. If they disagree on parenting or anything else, they back each other up to the kids and resolve their differences privately. No big deal.
Except for one little thing which made it a BIG DEAL.
In my fiance/husband’s family, experience and culture, you take care of things later. After the friends are gone. All correction is done privately and to do anything else equals humiliation of the highest degree. (And the whole parents backing each other up thing? That never happened either.)
Oops. Second marriage moment #27 was a disaster.
Turns out, my fiance/husband had modified the rules after he’d told me what he expected, so his son hadn’t actually been disobedient; I just didn’t know that. In support of his father’s parenting, I called the son on his behavior immediately, and while his friends were in the vicinity—so I disciplined him AND humiliated him, according to his culture, in one moment, at the same time!
Way to go, Andrea!
Sometimes even I outdo myself.
But we got through it.
We talked it out as parents. I apologized to my stepson. And to his credit, he didn’t hold a grudge. In fact, this far past it…I can shake my head and laugh at the senseless disaster of it all. I mean, ” The next best thing to solving a problem is finding some humor in it,” (Frank Clark) right?
I learned a lot from second marriage moment #27 and to laugh at it, continues the tradition of laughing at everything we can, instead of choosing to be overwhelmed by it, or get mad, at it all.
“I realize humor isn’t for everyone. It’s only for people who want to have fun, enjoy life and feel alive.” (“Real Life Quotes” blog, December 24, 2010, by Kevin Rayner)