Something I noticed when I first started living together with my partner was that there was a clash of certain ways of doing things / approaches or principles, even though we had similar cultures and similar belief systems. It often baffled me how we could be so different on such things.
Only now do I realise why.
As a parent, now I notice that some families around us live such different lives to us. Whether it’s bed time, watching tv, eating together, access to greenspace, the activities they do, reaction to undesirable behaviour, tolerating behaviours, the conversations they have. Not that anyone knows what the right way is but we’re all so different.
I notice it when I’m at the house of other families, and I notice it when their children (currently 6 or 7 yo) come and stay with us and how they behave and what they do (in a very unfiltered way).
And that isn’t to mention the influence of school and school peers which will certainly increase in the years to come.
These patterns of behaviour that seem to be adopted at this early age and will basically continue till there’s a reason to question them – essentially, a clash when the patterns of behaviour either have adapt or disappear. In my case I had to change many of the ways I did things – they weren’t suitable for family living. In the process of living together, we also created our own ‘norms’ that work for us in our context.
So you can have many similarities with someone, but then at a both deeper and more granular level these clashes need to be resolved – which can be resolved together in a healthy relationship that is solution orientated.