When the court ordered your final decree of divorce, the legal relationship between you and your ex ended. However, if you have children together, you will remain in each other’s lives at least until the children become adults and even for a while afterward.
Good co-parenting puts both of you on the same team, even if your marriage did not end on the best of terms. You need to let a difficult history stay where it belongs -in the past- and focus on giving your kids the safe and happy upbringing that they deserve. In this blog, we’ll share some great co-parenting tips that your children will thank you for later.
Tip #1: Agree to be on the Same Page
You and your ex may have different parenting styles, and there’s nothing wrong with that. What you do need to watch out for is letting these differences prevent you from working together as a team.
Being good co-parents means presenting a consistent and united front. If your marriage was a difficult one, it can be easy to argue and debate over the smallest details, such as school supplies or new clothes. Try to put any negative feelings aside and work together for the sake of the children. They deserve a stable relationship with both of you and you deserve to put those days of arguing behind you.
Tip #2: Disagree out of Earshot
Even if you and your ex get along well, there will be times when you disagree. Maybe you think your child needs a new computer for school and the other parent says that their current one is still in great shape. Confine these disagreements to text, email, and other mediums that the kids won’t come across unless you know that there’s no risk of a heated argument. It can actually be a good thing for them to see their parents treating one another with respect even when they’re not on the same page.
Tip #3: Be Flexible
Although you have a court-approved parenting plan, there will be times when you or your former spouse want to deviate from it. Perhaps there’s a great sports game playing on an evening when you have the kids and your ex really wants to take them to the event, or you want to bring them along to visit an elderly relative in the hospital but they’re with their other parent that night. Be willing to discuss and switch nights, especially if the change is something that will benefit the children.
Tip #4: Keep the Lines of Communication Open
Communication is an essential part of good co-parenting. If they text you information or a question about the kids, always respond, even if your feelings toward them at that moment are less than positive. By being willing to communicate promptly about these issues, you are putting the children first and they will benefit accordingly.
ZafiroLaw is Here to Help You Succeed
At ZafiroLaw, we understand that co-parenting can be difficult and gladly work with divorced couples to keep them focused on what’s best for their children. We can provide legal representation and recommend resources from the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, which is designed to support families in conflict. For more information or to meet with Attorney Katrina Zafiro, please contact us.