Co-parenting after divorce can present unique challenges. Yet, it is essential for your child that you and the other parent can work together to play an active role in their life.
When you can’t manage to get along with another person well enough to stay in a relationship, how do you co-parent with them? Here are some suggestions:
Understand the areas most likely to cause conflicts and head them off
Co-parenting is harder for some divorced couples than for others. If you understand what the potential issues are, you can take action to avoid them. Here are some points to consider:
- You have different ideas about parenting: You may feel your partner is smothering your child by not letting them work on weekends. They may feel you are harming your child’s studies by expecting them to earn their pocket money.
- Rules of the house: Rules can vary between households, but they should not contradict each other. Establishing some consistent routines for your children can help them adjust to living in two homes.
- Poor communication: You both may have said and done things that harmed the other person during your marriage breakup. To co-parent, you need to find a way to communicate without conflict, even if it is via text or a parenting app.
- Custody schedule problems: If the other parent is unhappy with the amount of parenting time allocated, they may seek to have a judge change it. If you turn up late for pick-ups or drop-offs, it will frustrate the other parent.
- Financial problems: Raising a child is costly. The party paying child support may feel aggrieved about the amount. The receiver may feel it insufficient. It can lead to resentment and arguments about who pays any extra expenses that occur.
Working out child custody arrangements in a respectful manner improves the odds that you won’t constantly land back in court over disputes. An attorney can often provide invaluable guidance as you proceed.