I'm seeking advice to a recent parenting decision in our blended family. I moved in with my partner 2 years ago. And our children 11, 8, 18 months.
This question relates to the 11 and 8 year old.
A no tv policy (house rule) was established in the mornings after I moved into the home as the kids were struggling to get ready in time for school in the morning and there on time. It was decided that unless you are completely ready for school, dressed including shoes and eaten breakfast, you are not to be watching tv.
The 11 year old has always and still to this day struggled to be ready in time for school on time and often misses out on tv time before school.
11yr old spends week on, week off, time period in the home.
8yr old is ready for school without any additional prompting and is in the home, full time.
On a week off (no 11 yr old) 8yr old was eating breakfast and he asked if he could sit at at the table and watch tv whilst eating breakfast.
As there a minimal issues with him being ready on time, I allowed him to do so.
During the week on, I explained that the no tv rule must still be in place until after breakfast as we still have problems being ready on time. I explained to 11 yr old that when not here, the tv is allowed whilst eating breakfast and that if she would like the same privileges then she must be completely ready by a certain time in order to sit and watch to whilst eating breakfast. (To avoid being late issues)
She raised no objections and seemed to understand the reason behind the process.
Recently partner witnessed 8yr old eating breakfast and watching tv (no 11yr old in house) and asked 8yr old to move himself so that he was no longer eating breakfast and watching tv. I explained to partner that 8yr old was allowed to eat and watch tv when 11 yr old is not in the home as there are no issues with being late. I also explained the conversation and the condition involved that was discussed with 11 year old.
Partner then expressed that a house rule is a house rule and should not be changed as it is showing favouritism towards 8 yr old.
I explained that a child should not be punished due to another child's inability to be ready on time and that by doing so would lead to more resentment between the kids. I explained that the tv is not watched during breakfast after a certain time when 11 year old is week on in order to prevent
I believe that each child must be held accountable for their own actions (just like in the grown up world) and behaviour and that to apply a blanket approach to privileges encourages resentment between the children. otherwise as one child is always punished due to the others actions.
Partner has expressed that the rules must always remain consistent and that he believes different rules for different children creates resentment. The rule is not different. If 11yr old is ready to sit and eat breakfast by a certain time then she also gets to watch tv whilst eating breakfast. 8yr old watches tv whilst it's week off as always ready in time to do so.
I made the change to the rule as I am the one that does the school morning preparations.
I honestly do not believe there should be any issues about the recent change.