You and the mother of your kid are a team.
If you were not, you could just split apart, isnt it?
When you are a manager of a department and you want to build your own team, you have basically two philosophies:
-You can focus on peoples weakness and force people to improve in every aspect they are bad, never recognizing their strenghts
-Or you focus on what people can do well, and assign the tasks to them so that everybody is using their strenghts, and sometime or the other you also give people the chance to improve their weakness.
The mother of my kid (we are separeted) wants him to do everything by brute force (thats my interpretation). If he is playing with a DVD, she will have a very agressive body language (in my opinion) and tell him:
-GIVE ME THE DVD.
You can clearly see that he gets intimidated, it causes embarassment to both of them, and this takes some minutes until its solved.
I just got near and proposed a trade: I showed him another object which was much more interesting than the DVD, and he was quite happy to make the "trade", or to take the most interesting object. In this case, I see it as a win-win situation: The kid got something even better that they wanted, and you too.
So, the only problem is if you dont define it as "proposing a trade", or "giving an alternative", but start to see it as a bribery. The problem is than not the action, but the mindset behind it.
I never liked the style of the mother of my kid for parenting, but once I was trying to put the kid to sleep by myself for ours, and it didnt work. I asked for her advice, and she told me I should put him on the room and, if he was unquiet to sleep, that I should leave the room and tell him that I was coming back as soon as he would be quiet. He didnt like it, and I felt horrible, but after 5 minutes he was sleeping!
On my method, it was taking two hours and stressing everybody, but using the method of the mother (which I usually see as harsh), it worked pretty well.
So I think the queston is not to decide if "proposing a trade" is ALWAYS bad or not, its just a question of feeling in which situation the "trade system" is better, and in which the "do because I know its good for you" is better!
Well, I hope I helped :)