Co-parenting after a divorce is often a challenge for former spouses, especially if there are still some hurt feelings and hostility remaining after enduring such a heart-wrenching process. However, you must find a way to work together, so you can effectively raise your children as a team. If you are having a hard time adjusting to the new dynamics of your relationship, co-parenting with your former spouse might seem like a tall order. To help set you on the right path, we compiled a list of tips for becoming a more effective co-parent.
Make it Work
Now that your marriage is over, the focus of your relationship with your former spouse is your children. Despite your differences and disagreements, you have one common goal – their overall wellbeing and happiness. You cannot serve their best interests if you are focused on bickering or trying to interfere with one another’s relationship with the children. If you need an outlet for your anger, resentment, or disappointment, consider seeking a therapist or turn to your close friends and family for help. Whichever method you choose for coping with your divorce, make sure you do not involve your children.
The more you focus on your children’s needs, the less you will focus on the past, so remember never to lose sight of what is most important. Of course, setting your feelings aside is a major challenge, so be patient with yourself and learn from your mistakes.
Consider the following co-parenting tips:
- Never use your children as messengers: Even if the message seems harmless, anything can erupt into a fight and your children will end up in the middle of it. Protect them from possible outbursts by communicating directly with your co-parent. Doing so will also ensure nothing gets lost in translation.
- Learn what works for you: Not all forms of communication have the same effect. If you and your former spouse seem to argue less when you text, choose this as the method you use most for communicating. Between phone calls, in-person conversations, and emails, you are bound to find a method that works best for you. Taking the time to figure it out will help you reduce conflict in your relationship.
- Coordinate for consistency: Just because your children have two separate households does not mean they should have two sets of rules. Coordinate with your co-parent on rules and routines, so your children can enjoy a better sense of safety and security.
- Listen to each other: Listening to your former spouse does not mean you have to agree with everything. However, when you become a better listener, you will respond better and more thoughtfully, which will facilitate more constructive discussions. Remember, you both want what is best for your children, even if you do not agree on what that means. Listening to each other will help you reach a middle ground you can both accept.
Discuss Your Case with a Compassionate Family Law Attorney
Family law matters are often the most sensitive and challenging most will ever deal with. At Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A., our legal team understands the difficulties clients face when embroiled in any family law matter, such as child custody, which is why we are committed to providing compassionate and knowledgeable guidance.
Contact our law office today at (727) 245-9009 to set up a consultation with one of our attorneys.