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Arguing in front of the kids: Do or Don't?


An occasional disagreement during which you treat each other with respect and move into problem-solving is actually a good thing for kids. It's considered a form of role modeling. It shows children that people can disagree and settle their problems in a peaceful way.


Arguments in which you repeat the same points over and over, use foul language, throw things, or call each other names can be traumatizing for children. These types of arguments can make children anxious and scared. If you bully one another, your kids learn to bully others.

Children learn how to handle conflicts and disagreements from their parents. When they see their parents being disrespectful, harsh and cruel to each other, they learn that it is OK to disrespect. They often interpret this behavior that the only way to disagree is to yell and scream at each other.

What are you arguing about?

Whether or not you should argue in front of your children should also depend on the subject matter. It is probably a bad idea to argue about an affair or sex in front of them.

What Can Parents Do to Minimize Any Trauma?

If children witness a bad argument between you and their other parent, don't sweep pretend it didn't happen. Apologize to them. Reassure them that you love each other. Mention specifically, in age-appropriate terms, how you would have liked to talk about the conflict.

Simple tips on how to keep arguments under control

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