Better Dad Podcast # 1: Conflicts and how we solve them!

Better Dad Podcast cover

🗓️ Recorded February 5th, 2024. 📍Playa Dorada, Lengüeta Arenosa, Baja California, Mexico

Click here to embed this episode on your website

Where do you want to listen?

 Spotify SPOTIFY
 RUM-79ca46cb RUMBLE
Google_Podcasts_icon GOOGLE POCKET CAST
castbox CASTBOX  podimo PODIO
 stitcher  STITCHER  Visit our podcast site SEE ALL

About this Episode

Jesper Conrad and Martin Cooke have started The Better Dad Institute. This episode is the first of their podcast series, which is simply called 'Better Dad Podcast.'

The goal is to explore topics together, daring to be vulnerable and sharing. A Podcast version of what goes on in The Better Dad Circles.

Details about this episode:
As a father, I've often found myself locked in a silent battle over who's right, especially with my kids. My co-host Martin and I tackle a struggle head-on, sharing our personal experiences with parenting conflicts and our pursuit of growth beyond the need to 'win.' We peel back the layers on handling arguments as I confess the lessons learned from my psychologist wife's techniques in conflict de-escalation. Together, we navigate the rough waters of family dynamics, offering insights on how to turn heated moments into opportunities for deeper connection and understanding.

Parenthood thrusts you into an arena where every day is a learning experience; this episode is no exception.  We reflect on the courage it takes to be vulnerable with our children, revealing how this openness can repair and strengthen the parent-child bond. Sharing our traditions and engaging in interests alongside our kids pave the way for a more harmonious family life.


Watch the full interview on YouTube

Copy the code below to embed this episode on your website.

<div id="buzzsprout-player-14450661"></div><script src="" type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8"></script>

With love


Jesper Conrad 


00:00 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Hi, jesper, hey Martin, and for the people listening, welcome. This is the first ever episode of the Better Dad podcast, and my name is Jesper Conrad and a wonderful man you also can hear and see if you're on YouTube it's Martin Cook, and together we have founded the Better Dad Institute. We have been talking back and forth over a long time. Should we create a podcast, shouldn't we? What should it be about? And, in reality, what it should be about is us, as dads, exploring some of the subjects that can sometimes be difficult to talk about with other dads, because for some reason, us men do not have a very long tradition for sharing personal feelings and stories and we kind of keep it a little on the surface. I personally think too much, and I believe that we, by sharing our stories, our thoughts, can see ourselves groups. That is what we do in the Better Dad circles we have, but also here in the podcast just together explore subjects. So that's what we are going to do today, martin. 

01:21 - Martin Cooke (Host)
That was good. Jesper, I'm definitely I would say I'm a relatively unusual dad. I do like to talk and have. Perhaps I was going to say I always like to talk, but it only came about after I was about 20 something. I'm definitely a talker, sometimes guilty of talking too much, so let's keep this podcast tight. Yeah, get into the meat, get into some subject. 

01:50 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, and we talked a little about the subject for today could be conflicts. And I have four kids, one wife. Wonderful to be together. Still, yeah, same here. 

02:10 - Martin Cooke (Host)

02:11 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
And I have my fair share of conflicts during life, both with the kids and with my wife. And yourself too, I hope, and always when I have left one of the conflicts I just have felt shitty. The anger part of me, if you can call it, the fire of anger, gets to be ignited. It can be really difficult, or could earlier, for me to not want to win the verbal fight, to be the one who was right and everybody else was stupid, and only I saw the clarity and all other people were stupid. 

03:04 - Martin Cooke (Host)
So let me get this clear you like to be right in conflict. Is that where you come from? I was right. I was right. 

03:12 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
That was the feeling that I have had in the moments and I can see that when I look back. Sometimes it has taken me some long time afterwards not days or anything, but some. It could if we were discussing something. It could take me some hours to just walk around and just make up stories in my own mind about how wrong they are and I was right and they are stupid. And I don't know how it works for you when you have had a conflict with your wife or kids. But I ended up on the. I will call it the righteous prick mode. 

03:54 - Martin Cooke (Host)
And yeah, that's. That's funny because I was. I was discussing this with my wife prior to jumping onto this with you, and I was talking about when you are right in conflict and I said I used the words when you are right. Speaking to my wife, I didn't say when you feel like you're right, because it's not a feeling, it's just you come at it from a very clear position. And she was saying, well, I am often right and it's similarly, perhaps the you know she can have strong convictions. I think my convictions can perhaps be a little more easily swayed, or so I think in conflict is probably quite important to understand kind of what character you are and also your partner. You know how often are they right. So how stubborn are they? Or, yeah, how do they like to calm down? You know, like, does it take hours, days or what? How long does it take for you to perhaps see the other perspective or dial it back a little? 

05:05 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, then I'm like in doubt should we even do this podcast? Because I put myself in a bad light when I when I look at how shitty I am at conflict. But look, that's. That is the very point. 

05:16 - Martin Cooke (Host)
That is the very point, jasper of us starting the Better Than Institute isn't it, and you know you've alluded to this. But the whole point of it, or a large point of it, isn't just to help others. There's something positively selfish. You know, we want to improve who. We are right. 

05:33 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Absolutely. And when I look at my wife, have found a wonderful technique, even though, even though, if we had argued about something and it was me who were in the wrong, I have a point today. It is right and wrong in a second. But when you end up arguing, someone wants to either be right or wrong and you want to find someone who is right or wrong. And even though I couldn't have been the one who were wrong, my wife have figured out the best way to inflate my anger is to give me a little time and then come afterwards and say she's sorry, even though she haven't actually done anything wrong. 

Well, in an argument, of course, both parts are to blame, because you can end up being really mean to the ones you love with your words, because you know each other so good that when you argue, you often sometimes both parts end up saying some stupid shit. But her taking the first step and that's where I said I am not proud. I would love to be better at being the one taking the first step. But her taking the first step was saying hey, man, I'm sorry this happened and that we argued, and that just like yeah, it's the heat out of it, doesn't it yeah? 

07:11 - Martin Cooke (Host)
It deflates the balloon of anger inside of me in a really healthy way. And that's the technique, just the context. Your wife's psychologist, so she would be well versed in this kind of thing. 

07:24 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
That must be really annoying though right Useful too, but what I see, and one of the things that could be interesting to explore is in this talk, is both how could we become better at catching ourselves and stopping ourselves when we start to argue with either our loved one or our children, which also are loved, of course? How can we be better to stop ourselves when we have surpassed the point of reason? I believe there is this in arguments Sometimes you get all emotional and just arguing and when you look at it sometimes you can't even remember where it started and you're just stupid. So it could be interesting to talk about how could we become better at stopping, but also interesting to talk about how can we deflate it from the start, because seeing something as an argument where I used the words earlier brinner or loser of an argument, then you're already wrong. 

08:49 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, yeah. So there's something there about I was thinking. It's like do you have consciousness when you're not feeling angry or in a point of conflict that you can become, you can lose it. Basically, are you aware that you can lose it in an argument? If you are aware of that, that's really helpful. That feels like the first step, right. It's kind of like if you were to try and improve yourself, it'd be like, yeah, hands up, when I am in an argument with somebody or my partner or my children, I can go from zero to 100 miles an hour quite quickly. Yeah, so it's kind of recognizing. 

And maybe also I think there's a kind of an important point here which is to think about where it comes from as well. So kind of the environment you grew up in acknowledging where did it come from. Not so you can be like, oh, poor me, or it's my dad's fault because he lost it as well. But I do think there's something important about decoupling from a repetitive behavior and so if you know where it comes from, you can then kind of go. I understand who I am today, but I can change in the future. I want to break this pattern, perhaps for my children or yeah, yeah, there I'm looking. 

10:20 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, I think my dad is still alive, but his timber is. 

I don't see any negative sides of it today because he's adult I'm adult, but I think he had this where it sometimes blew up, and I can see the same in myself. 

And absolutely now I've been a dad for more than 20 years. So when I'm reflecting on this, it is 20 years of being a dad when, no, I mean back in the early days I was super stressed out about being a dad, figuring it all out, where today I'm very, very chill about it. So I don't have huge arguments with my children any longer. The only times I can get annoyed really is if they have a problem in their life, in their personal life, in their feelings, and they don't want help, but they still take the space or they're claiming a space to own this feeling, but without it's really possible for you as a parent to do anything. And then the feeling of being inacquited, if that's the right word for it, makes me sad in a way where I just it turns out as being annoyed, and I think that probably happens often for parents that if you feel not good enough and not wanted, then you just think that your children are stupid. 

12:13 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, I was thinking about what you were saying then about how a younger Yaspers say you're in the first, like zero to five years being inexperienced, and that's something I was reflecting on today. It takes time to. I think we live in a world of quick hacks and if I read this book, I'll suddenly become enlightened and I'll be able to stop this pattern of behaviour. But I think it's really important to acknowledge that it takes time to become an expert at anything, doesn't it? And becoming a parent, you're thrown into the deep end. There's no manual, and I really do believe that if your children are here to piss you off, I mean they're here to press your buttons and that is, in part, a gift to you. I know that sounds crazy, but they're kind of like little therapists in part. 

13:11 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
They really give you Absolutely hit the weak spots you have and show you where you need to grow as a person Absolutely. 

13:20 - Martin Cooke (Host)
So they are the hack. You can save money on a therapist If you just recognise what are the common things that keep pissing you off about. Or perhaps I mean we're talking about conflict here, but this also goes into. What do you struggle with when you're a new parent, doesn't it? There's so many things. When you were a new parent, what was the biggest thing for you? Was there one thing in particular that you really struggled with. 

13:49 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I remember Ah man, it's many years ago, I think. One of the things the first come to mind when I think back at where my children pissed me off was if they were normal brother and sisters they mean to each other or they didn't get stuff, they couldn't figure out how to work together or play together. I got so annoyed, which is a stupid way of trying to help them. 

14:27 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Well, you weren't trying to help them, you just get triggered. Yeah, you can't help people when you're really triggered. 

14:35 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
No, no, no. Well, I'm talking about conflict. The biggest hack I have gotten in my life during these 20 years of being a parent is to stop looking at it as a problem. Not about being a parent, but about all the small problems I have seen or things. I mean. It could be whatever. When you are being so lucky that you are the parent of a child, you come with a lot of ideas about what is right, what is wrong, how should it be, and all these feelings that are almost imprinted in you. You have grown up with the parents, you have the society around you, you have the culture. You have that's right. 

And sometimes I've been triggered about what would the neighbours say. 

15:35 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Absolutely a judgement of others. My children are screaming at its past bedtime and what are they going to think? 

15:43 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, and when you remove the but why should this be a problem? Then you can remove that. There even is a conflict and there's it's funny the word conflict because Can we look at the challenges we face in the very close partnership it is to live together with a partner, with a wife, husband, whatever you have out there, Sometimes you can just get a little annoyed at each other or stuff happens in life and instead of having it as a conflict, how can we then see it as a challenge we need to solve together? 

16:42 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah well something that brings us together and creates more connection. Perhaps is that what you're saying. 

16:52 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I'm more saying that sometimes I will. Well, we haven't had any recently, me and my wife, where we argued about something, but there's some of them. When I look back it's like oh, why didn't you work together to solve this challenge you stood in front of in life, instead of fighting about something, arguing and fighting with your words about what is up, what is down and who is right, why don't you go on the side of the team? 

17:27 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, yeah, that's a really good point, because I do believe that when you're in partnership with somebody and indeed if you've had children, you are on a team it's like you're a partnership, you're a business If you operate it as a business. A conflict resolution in business is really important, isn't it? 

17:48 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Because it gets in the way of good performing teams in that face happiness, well-being, performance, all of these things and I've seen something in my mind mirror, you could call it when I've been reflecting on where I think I could grow as a person, which is it's in the same area of the I want to be right. Then, for some reason, I've also, and maybe it comes from personal insecurity, but I want to be better. So I measure myself, sometimes not a lot still, but still the evil little ego pops up from time to time where, if we're standing in front of something, a challenge in life, whatever, I want to be better at handling it than my wife, and that is just sad somehow, martin. 

18:48 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Well, it's competition, isn't it? You feel like you want to wear it. 

18:52 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, but should you compete with the person you're living together with? That's kind of weird. You should be on a team. 

18:59 - Martin Cooke (Host)
In an ideal world. Yes, there's a really nice saying. 

19:02 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Have you met that feeling in yourself? 

19:08 - Martin Cooke (Host)
No, I'm not really one for competition, but I do have experience of getting angry because I want to be right. I can think of an example not in my personal relationship, but it was a work-based situation some years ago where I worked in an office and it was a very old house and the floor wasn't level and, as such, my chair wasn't level. And after a while, a good year I started to develop back issues and I started to think about it and start well, no wonder I'm sitting like this. And so I put all of my energy into being right, fighting the employer rather than it was all their fault not actually considering what gifts were there for me I wasn't using. I was sitting down for eight hours a day. I could have been walking around, et cetera, et cetera. 

And I went on a Tai Chi retreat for a week and this very wise Tai Chi teacher told him I've got this awful back, I can't do anything. And then I probably started ranting about why I was angry about the employer that could be your partner, whatever. And he said Martin, do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? And it was in that moment. It was like a light bulb. He gave me the ability to not need to be right anymore. I was like, yeah, I want to be happy. Okay, what can I change myself? And I'm like I can't change my employer. And I came back from that retreat I bought a yoga ball. I started moving around. I was on the telephone a lot. I started moving around, I started doing core exercises, I got fitter, I started taking responsibility for things that I could take responsibility for. And I think there's something in that around, if we're to operate in partnership in unison is thinking about what do we have responsibility for and what can we change individually? 

21:15 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I think a lot of the dads out there, including ourselves, will from time to time have a conflict with our children, end up yelling, having some anger issues, whatever. What would your recommendation be if people meet this in themselves? 

21:41 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, my first gut feeling is around fallibility. I've said this to my children from a very young age daddy's not perfect. I don't get it right all the time. In fact, yeah, perhaps through children's eyes you perceive your parents maybe not when you're a teenager, when you're younger as perfect or certainly hold them up in high regard, don't you? But I've been quite conscious about explaining that I'm not perfect and maybe that's my way of getting out of poor behavior not getting out of explaining, I suppose, explaining poor behavior. Look, I'm sorry I shouted at you. I was feeling really angry because I feel like today I've just been of service all day. I haven't been able to do anything for myself, so that's kind of where I've gone, that's how I've explained things to my children. 

22:45 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
It triggered something in me, martin, which is an unhealthy habit. I have seen it myself and my wife also have it, and I think lots of parents have it. It is the excuse. Well, as you say, it's really good to admit towards your children that you're not perfect Absolutely, but I have sometimes heard myself saying I'm sorry, I got angry, I got angry, and then I mentioned all the stuff I got angry about. So I'm double blaming my child. 

First, I was angry and shouted, and then I kind of and I think it's because we cannot admit towards ourselves okay, I made a fool, I shouldn't have shouted, I lost my temper. I'm in no right to be the one who thinks, just because I'm an adult and can shout louder than you can, that I'm the one in the right and we know this deep down. But then sometimes the excuse come with a and I'm missing the English words as a native Danish speaker here with the need for clarifying why it was okay you shouted, which it wasn't, but I've just heard myself do that from time to time and for anyone listening out there, if you catch yourself in this or next time, you end up being a poor dad, like all of us have been shitty dads. See, if you are double blaming, first you shout or you lose your temper. Then you say you're sorry and then you explain why it was okay that you ended up losing your temper. It wasn't okay to lose your temper. 

24:44 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Absolutely not. Could you give us an example of, let's say, a thing that you lose your temper over, and how you could say I'm sorry and then convey it in a way that doesn't give with one hand and take it back with another? Is there an example? That would be super cool if I had one. Well, let's just say you got pissed off about the state of their room or, you know, in your context you've done a lot of travel in a relatively small home. 

25:15 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Which is a very interesting thing. I've been thinking a lot about why people say they're sorry. Who are they saying it for? Most of the time I say, when I look back, a lot of the times I've said I'm sorry, it is because I want to have the guilt removed from me, because I felt bad about whatever it is I have done. If it's shouting, I feel bad about having shouted and made my kids sad. But how do I show them that I love them? Is it by saying I'm sorry? Because sometimes asking for forgiveness or saying you're sorry is for your own benefit. 

26:12 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, you're talking to yourself, so I think perhaps the thing comes to mind. 

26:15 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
No, you're asking them to forgive you by saying you're sorry and what you did was wrong and it wasn't. It won't make it right. You said, saying you're sorry, but you try to erase the past by saying you're sorry and you cannot. So I think what is much more important, of course, you should say hey, what I did was wrong, I'm sad about that happened, I'm sad I did shout it. I shouldn't have done that. But how do you actually meant the broken connection? Because if you, if you end up, it is with your partner or with your children, if you end up losing your temper and away, where you are shouting at each other or them, you dare. The connection between the heart is broken. That's one person and I don't know if it was you, martin, last summer, when we met that said something funny about why people are shouting when they're standing next to each other. It is because the hearts have been moved away, so far away from each other, that you need to shout for the heart feeling to be heard. Right. 

And of course it's some he be, they be bullshit, but there's something in it I like. Yeah, and you need to. If you end up shouting, you have moved away from each other's connection in a way where you need to acknowledge you need to mend it afterwards. So I think that's the best you can do when you, when you have and, and it's to figure out, how do I then mend it? 

27:56 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Okay, so to lean into the hippie, hippie bullshit which I'm quite, quite like which I also do, but I just can't accept it. 

Yeah, are we? Could we say that conflict can arise when we're feeling unconnected and we're looking for an opportunity to deepen that connection, and perhaps not the only way that we know. But reparation, you know, coming together can only come from that kind of shouting at each other's hearts, like, like I missed you or you know, like you're spending too much time on this and you're getting angry at this. Let's say, somebody's work situation, your partner's working a lot, you start attacking the work situation, the work thing, and actually a clearer way of articulating would be to say sorry, I, I miss you. 

Rather than attacking the work, like attacking the state of the bedroom, you know, like, rather than attacking the state of the child's bedroom, it's. It's actually saying, well, I don't know how to give this example, but I think it's talking about how it makes you feel it. You know it makes me feel, or it makes it hard for me to think, and I would really like to have a calm environment so that we could spend more time connecting that kind of thing. But when your room is in this way, it makes me feel angry towards you and I know that's my feeling and that's my problem to work through. But something I would really love is you know if we could do this together or if you could try and do XYZ. 

29:36 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
You're touching upon something that is that hurts a little to look at. Which is we? How is it we have learned that true conflict if we end up? I don't know how to put this. 

There's also something beautiful in loving another person so much that you know you can have a conflict with them and it's not a question about not loving. You can be angry at each other and disagree a lot, but the love is still there and it can be mended and it's kind of a I mean me and my wife, and maybe it's a decision we took. We have never questioned us as a couple. We have been angry at each other Of course we have, but we have decided, when we said yes to each other in our heart, that it's like okay, this is good, we will make this work and we love each other and that's it. But then we also need to work through when we do not agree about something. But what made me sad to think about was are we so shitty at saying, hey, I really want to feel deeply connected with you that we sometimes know that the shortcut to connection is after an argument? It's the whole. I mean makeup, sex and all these people talk about you know so what's going on? 

Why shouldn't we just figure out how to be connected? 

31:28 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, I think. Yeah, I think to be connected is to be vulnerable, which is to vocalise what you really want for yourself and and viewing the other person as as, perhaps, an object that might fix you. If you're feeling wounded yourself, you know, like what am I saying? I'm saying if you have wounds that you're perhaps unaware of, patterns of behaviour that you're unaware of, then it's inevitable that you're going to find yourself repeating the same kind of conflicts until until you explore, kind of what's where that came from for you. I mean, I am a big advocate of, of understanding your past, because it definitely influences who, who you are, in the patterns of behaviour you get into now. Have you ever well, I don't know, have you? Have you ever had any therapy, or is living with a therapist enough? 

32:30 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Beside living together with the psychology is for 20 plus years. 

Yes, I have, earlier in my life, have been little, but not where I went into those part of my past and I, when I look back, I had a very traditional upbringing and from a period where the dads didn't talk a lot about feelings no, no, and it's not to I'm on, absolutely not on a let's blame our parents but, as you say, understand our past. 

It is not a thing I. I mean the dialogue I have with you now is feeling wise, deeper than a dialogue I've had with my dad and and and I hope with our project with the Better Dad Institute and with these talks, that we can help normalize that we men can share and talk and not and also be open about. Hey, I'm sitting at this and I'm sitting there and I would love to be better at this and I see negative sides of myself here I would like to work with. So when you say looking at the past that's what I'm thinking of is like there was not a tradition in my family structure for for the talks with my dad in that area. I talked a lot about feelings with my mom, but not my dad, and I do believe that it would be healthy for dads to talk with their sons about feelings, yeah, and conflicts it does. 

34:36 - Martin Cooke (Host)
I mean, perhaps I'm just was going to speak to the fact that when you've got lots of children we've both got four children, but actually it's not about the number of children. I was going to say that making time to spend spending time with just one child, I think is a really important thing to do, to try and carve out these little moments for connection, because I feel as though in the family unit you can, you've all got your parts to play. I noticed that the family dynamic shifts. Let's say, when, when my eldest isn't in the house, it means that the next one along steps almost into that, into that realm and and and. So we're all kind of acting in our our parts in the family, but but kind of creating some space where we can connect with our individual children, I think is really important. I don't know if you've. How have you navigated that over the years, spending time just with one child? Or have you found that hard? Because I definitely found that hard. 

35:39 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
We take. We have a tradition of going on weekly walks. Now they are just whatever week they work, but we had weekly Wednesday walks because it's an alleration and that is fun, so so wonderful weekly Wednesday walks. Even there goes. We can probably take more W's there, but those do it for me, because when you are walking 10 kilometers together as a family you intermingle during the time you're walking. It's like often it's a four hour walk. Then you walk together with your spouse at some point, then one of the children, then another and and, and. As we have four children but one is a grown up, so often we are only five when we walk and that is not the big mix, because then sometimes one is walking alone and so it actually is really good if we have a friend walking with us so we can do that. But then I've seen that besides individual time, then one of the things that have repaired and given big connections for me with my each of my children is to to have something we do together, which is told me about this before. 

37:12 - Martin Cooke (Host)
I like this. 

37:12 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, and it is it is to have something we do together, which is important to do together. It can be with one of my sons. We had a game we played called Little King Story, but then you have something to chat about and you have something that is not. How are you, how am I, how am I you can call it to have something external in common with each of your children, and, and, and, and. Now, when I'm mentioning it out loud, I'm like I can see that we've grown out of some of it here with one of the children. Maybe I actually should take that up again and do that. 

38:00 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah as a. So I'm listening to you thinking, oh yeah, I had a tradition of playing this particular card game with the children and we do that every evening. That was really nice because we'd put some music on, have some laughs and talk and then fallen out the habit of it and it's. I was just thinking then about the importance of working at something you know, like having a good exercise, like having positive habits, and just hearing you say that, just thinking, oh, we haven't played that game and then maybe that game was a chapter. But it's like looking for opportunities to have both, both people, having a good time, like I've, I don't know, some I I don't know if I applaud parents that that play games with their children for hours that they hate, or or I don't really. 

38:51 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I've never been with that. That's where. That's where it should be. You shouldn't do it for your child, you shouldn't do it for yourself. You should do it because it's something you do together and and there it can. Sometimes the trap is easy like, oh my God, if you have a child playing Fortnite, then you start playing Fortnite with the child. That is not an external thing, you're doing together. Then you're going into the field of interest that is already there in the child or in you, because then one of one of you can lose interest. So let's say, I find this new board game, so I'm going to play Fortnite with the child. I'm going to play Fortnite with the child and I'm going to play Fortnite with the child, so I'm going to play Fortnite with the child. So my child is already there in the, in the child or in you, because then one of one of you can lose interest. 

39:49 - Martin Cooke (Host)
So let's say, I find this new board game or this musical instrument or video game or whatever and we come to it and my child isn't interested. I was feeling insecure about my relationship with my child, you know, or like well, I've tried and it doesn't work. It's not a one shot deal, is it? It's not like you try one thing and if it doesn't work it's. 

40:17 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
No, no, you keep on, and I know, and that's personal insecurity again. I have had so much fun drawing drawings together with my youngest daughter, but now she's so good Martin. 

40:35 - Martin Cooke (Host)
I've got a twist on that. 

40:36 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Though I used to do drawing, I don't want to draw together with her anymore because I feel inequited. I'm just like, well, my shit looks shitty. I mean I was better than her once, yeah okay, so you've caught the competitive gene. 

40:51 - Martin Cooke (Host)
Yeah, I would do a drawing game where I would, let's say, there's three of us and I would say, right, everybody's got to draw this. And I would describe this and you'd get a minute or two, you'd be under pressure. So it'd be an elephant riding a bicycle backwards with a television on its head. Go Cool, yeah. 

41:12 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
But it is very clear for me when I look at conflicts and I also think that's why we are talking about this in a dialogue that is about conflicts, and that is when I look back over the more than 20 years of parenting I've had in my life. 

I've had in my life the periods where I have had a strong connection, where we, where I had ridden of having fun together with one of my children, or each of them on their own about something then we had a connection there. Then the overall connection was not as easy to break where. If there isn't this, if it just becomes a parent child relationship and you don't have something that is really cool and fun to do together, then I can see the connection break easier, and it's in both ways. It can be them thinking I'm a stupid dad and it can be me thinking they are an annoying brat or whatever. Yeah, so I think that one of the biggest hacks in in conflict resolution is see what you can do upfront to have a strong connection, have something to learn, because why should you fight with one? You? 

42:31 - Martin Cooke (Host)
love that's. That's gonna be fun for both of you. Yeah, yeah, I really like that. So there's got to be something about. Well, either it's a podcast or a list, a blog post on our website, all about fun things you can do right we should do that, but let's not make too many promises now. 

We started the podcast, goodness okay let's just keep this hush-hush, then no one heard that. No, yeah, but I think, as a sort of final thought on the topic of conflict, where I've got to in this discussion is this you know, perversely, do we kind of invite conflict when we're feeling less connected? I don't know if I'm clear yes or no on that, but it kind of doesn't matter. What I'm left with is this feeling of of like actually connection, connection, spending time thinking about the other person and yourself and that being the glue. The glue that that means when you do have conflict and and we haven't said it, I think conflict is okay, yeah, but when you do have conflict, that it doesn't shatter everything. It's this kind of flexible blue. 

43:48 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, and there is with the podcast I have with my wife called self-directed with, if anybody wants to listen to that. Also, we interviewed a woman called summer Jean and she said something that has just stuck with me and I'm still working on how can I implement it better in my life. She said force and connection cannot coexist. So you cannot force people to something and, at the same point, demand that they have a strong loving connection to you. Force and connection do not coexist. You need a connection and and the connection needs to be strong and if you are connected, I would do things for you because I love you. I would help you with things because I love you. 

If you ask me of something, I know you are a reasonable human being, but it needs to come from the connection. So with the conflict resolution we are talking about, I also got triggered, actually, martin, about the do it sometimes seek conflicts because I am disconnected already and I want to be connected. That is an interesting one to to go and ponder on. I'm not sure I want to hear the answer because it's maybe a yes but that's the work, isn't it? 

45:20 - Martin Cooke (Host)
yeah, it's the horrible thing, you call this in remember, remember no, but. 

45:27 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
But it is really interesting to ask yourself where is the glue that binds me together? Where is it I have something third in common with my wife, of my children, where we do stuff together to do them together and not because we are married or I'm your dad. Where is it we do stuff that that strengthens our connection? Yeah, right, and should we should write a blog post about it and and see our thoughts more in depth about how people can work with this yeah, and I think there is something as well about the importance. 

46:08 - Martin Cooke (Host)
We haven't said this. The importance of when you're a parent and you're really in the trenches, you know you're really in it, especially when your children are younger is to try and find a tiny bit of fresh air, not literally, but like clean air, where you've got a little bit of time to pause and reflect. Maybe that's doing a fun thing or looking after your body or your mind in some way, because it's really easy to not notice how the incremental effect of a feeling frustrated or you're not as connected as you were with your partner because this new baby's here and you know, and then it can it can cause conflicts ultimately, yeah and and, as this is the podcast for the better that institute, then what I would say with that is I find it really wild that you can take 10 years of education where the goal is that you should learn how to work and do a job, but where is the education we have to become fathers? 

47:11 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
where is the the tradition of sharing that that give us the knowledge? Yeah to to do such an important task. 

47:22 - Martin Cooke (Host)
It is to bring up a child in the world, and I mean yeah, to become a lawyer, it's whatever number of years in university, but yeah, but that's yeah, just go ahead yeah, and I think that that is the reason for starting the best dad institute, and I want to invite anyone listening who wants to sit around the fire, as I believe we used to sit around the fire as men and talk, or we'd be out and about doing our thing, fighting with the woolly mammoths, or and also allowing other men to be around our children. Allowing seems like the wrong way of putting it, but just just living in more in community. I think we're quite, we can feel quite cut off, so that again is a motivation for doing this. 

48:10 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
So join one of our circles and listen and conversation and me and Martin will continue looking at ourselves with looking at our feelings, talking about all these difficult things it is to be a dad. Today's subject was conflict, where we ended up figuring out, you know, exploring that one of the best ways to avoid conflict is to make sure we have very strong connection and work on that. But we are open to getting subjects that you would love us to to explore together and we won't meet once a month and take a deep talk about these subjects we have. That is important to share and, martin, I'm very happy that you are, as always, open and loving and caring and explorative when we talk together and that we have this safe space where we even invite listeners into listen to us being insecure about all the things we are doing likewise. 

49:23 - Martin Cooke (Host)
I love it. It's it's important stuff, and I look forward to us reflecting when we next speak about how we got on with our homework, which has come off the back of this discussion with you. 

49:37 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Okay, martin, thanks a lot and for the listeners out there, send an email at hate the better dad, the Institute comm if you want to send a subject or if you want to hear more than otherwise. A new podcast will come out in the future. So thank you a lot, yeah thanks, jasper take care of you bye. 


#54 - Sandra Dodd | Unschooling thoughts on gaming, YouTube and the internet
#55 - Sandra Dodd | The Unforeseen Benefits of Unschooling - Healing past traumas


There are no comments yet. Be the first one to leave a comment!

🎙️Our Podcast is Powered by You🎙️ 

We run our podcast on love, passion, coffee and your generosity. Here are some ways you can help!