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The Rules of Parenting, 2nd Edition by Richard Templar

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RULE 33

Moods are catching

When you have kids you become a family. No longer are you a free spirit or a cosy couple. You’re a family. And everyone in a family interacts with everyone else. That means everyone’s moods affect everyone else. Now, some people are better than others at being cheerful when everyone around them is throwing a hissy fit, but most of us find that our moods change with the moods of the people around us.

As a Rules parent, you need to understand that you are responsible for the family’s mood. I don’t mean it’s your fault every time someone is unhappy. I just mean that if everyone has subsided into gloom, or if you all start shouting at one another, it’s no good wishing one of the others would stop whingeing or yelling ...

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