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Playing Good Cop/Bad Cop

Maybe we've all watched too much "Law and Order," but that whole good cop/bad cop routine really does come in handy: Sometimes saying, "Wait until your father comes home!" actually gets the kids to behave. However, warn experts, this tactic is best left down in the police station. "Not only does this discipline technique put the other parent in the bad light as the 'mean' parent, it also sends the message that you might not be able to make up your mind about what to do on your own," say Devra Gordon-Renner and Aviva Pflock, co-authors of "Mommy Guilt: Learn to Worry Less, Focus on What Matters Most, and Raise Happier Kids." Instead, next time you're trying to figure out a proper punishment for your child, try saying something like, "When your father gets home, we are going to discuss how to handle this." Then, your child will learn that Mom and Dad are a team. "The important thing is that you don't set up a situation where one parent is the disciplinarian and the other parent isn't," add Gordon-Renner and Pflock.

(CREDIT: R. Nelson/Flickr/Getty)
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