If 'Parenting Differences' Drove Brangelina to Divorce, We Totally Get It

Angelina Jolie and brad pitt split parenting issuesUnless you've been without access to media (like in cave, maybe ... on Mars) for the past few hours, you've probably heard Angelina Jolie has filed for divorce from her husband of two years, Brad Pitt. While it's not really shocking for celebrity couples to split, what makes this separation a little more surprising than most is the reason being reported for the breakup: parenting issues. Or ... is it?

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Though we certainly don't know what's going on in the Jolie-Pitt household, differences over how to raise children can absolutely create tension and, ultimately, lead to divorce.

As rumors swirl around the couple, who met in 2004 on the set of Mr. & Mrs. Smith, we've learned that Angie wants physical custody of the couple's six children, with Brad granted visitation rather than joint custody. 

We know that Jolie, a humanitarian and activist, has very strong opinions when it comes to how she views the world, particularly those who are vulnerable, so it makes complete sense that she'd have the certain ideals about how she wants her children to be raised.

Though we don't know too much about which of Pitt's "parenting methods" didn't align with Jolie's vision, I totally get where coming from two different places can cause one big problem. 

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While you might discuss how you plan to handle things like bank accounts and where you'll spend the holidays before you get married, your parenting style is something you can't really predict until the kids are on the scene and growing up. 

Lately, the biggest disagreements my husband and I have had have been over our differences in parenting. Here are a few (recurring) examples:

Me: Boys, set the table for dinner, please.

My husband: Liz, they're tired from playing Wiffle ball. Let them rest.

Me: Boys, did you do your homework?

My husband: Liz, school just started. Give them time to adjust.

Me: I'd like the boys to sweep, empty the dishwasher... [insert simple chore here].

My husband: I'll do it. They don't really do a great job anyway.

Me: But they'll never learn if you keep doing it for them!

Me: Boys, did you eat that whole half-gallon of ice cream I just bought last night?

My husband: Liz, it really wasn't that much when you divide it three ways.

Me: AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

While these issues aren't huge in the big picture, they often leave me feeling like the "bad cop" -- a relentless nag, the only parent focused on doing what needs to get done, and, sometimes, a single mom.

Meanwhile, "Dad" is the full-time clown who will let you eat an entire bag of beef jerky right before bed and not insist you brush your teeth. How can I compete? 

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Even when I try to be the fun one -- no one's buying it.

Of course, for many families there are much larger issues than whether children eat all their peas or learn to write thank-you notes, and we certainly don't want to trivialize whatever has transpired between Jolie and Pitt. If Angie feels she needs to put her children's well-being first, we trust her judgment as a mom. 

Parenting can be tough enough when moms and dads are on the same page. When you have different ideas on how you want your children to be raised, and, ultimately, who you want them to be, it can be even harder. 

 

 

Image via Jen Lowery / Splash News

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