How Divorced Parents Can Co-Parent With Ease
If you have children and your marriage is on the rocks, you can opt for a divorce. However, you need to keep in mind that after a divorce, you will need to maintain a relationship with your ex-spouse. Unless you will have sole custody of your child, which is highly unlikely, you’ll need to share custody. This means that, for best results, you and the other parent will need to work as a team to parent your child as effectively as possible.
Unless there is a rare situation involved (such as domestic violence, abuse, or neglect), a child needs both parents involved in their life. So how can you effectively manage this when you may still have sadness, anger, and bitterness about the divorce? How do you handle disagreements? Here are some tips to help.
Set Your Anger Aside
This is probably the hardest part of co-parenting, but it’s by far the most important. That’s because co-parenting is about your child’s happiness, and they’re not going to be too happy if you’re constantly complaining badmouthing or complaining about the other parent. It’s common to feel hurt and angry about the divorce, but don’t vent to your kids. Focus on them and discuss your feelings with a therapist or trusted friend.
This can also be complicated. After all, if you and your ex-spouse communicated well, you would probably still be married. To communicate better, approach co-parenting like a business. Relax and be respectful and cordial. Make requests instead of demands. Show restraint if you’re starting to feel angry. Instead of yelling and screaming, walk away and cool down. Listening is also important. Even if you don’t agree with the other parent, you should at least let them be heard.
Act Like a Team
Co-parenting is easier when there’s consistency. When you and the other parent have the same rules, it’s easier for your child to adapt after a divorce. While not everything has to be exactly the same, you and the other parent should be on the same page when it comes to important lifestyle rules like homework, curfews, and off-limit activities. Discipline should also be fairly similar. If you enact discipline at your house, the other parent should follow through as well to show consistency. Schedules such as meals and bedtimes should also be consistent to make life easier for everyone involved.
Make Important Decisions Together
This is a part of legal custody. Making decisions about education, medical care, and religion can be complicated but they are crucial things that need to be agreed on together. This means you need each other in the loop and be open and honest.
Seek Legal Help
Dealing with issues with your child can be complicated after a divorce. Co-parenting is not easy, especially when the divorce was not amicable and the parents are using the child against each other.
Fort Lauderdale child custody lawyer Edward J. Jennings, P.A. can help you with your co-parenting issues. We can provide you with the help you need to move on post divorce with less stress. Schedule a consultation with our office to learn more. Call 954-764-4330 or fill out the online form.