You just went through a divorce. Your marriage is over. You have 2 children and those children have a mother and father who are now not living together, and they are going their separate ways. How do you help the children cope with the change in their life circumstances? The answer is to cooperate and co-parent.
Co-Parenting After Divorce
Both parents should always work in their children’s best interests. It is important to put the children’s lives and best interests ahead of the parents. Children have daily routines, schedules, educational issues and a need for discipline. Both parents need to work together to help promote their children’s lives. Even if the parents do not get along, they need to put their differences aside and put their children’s best interests in the forefront of their minds. Parents divorce each other. Children do not divorce their parents.
Parents to successfully co-parent should communicate with each other on a regular basis regarding issues involving the children. They should especially be consistent on addressing issues involving child rearing decisions. They need to be flexible with each other and take into consideration each other’s work schedule to promote parenting time between the children and both parents. There should be an accepted and established visitation schedule but the parents should maintain flexibility concerning the parenting time each parent has with the children. The parents should be considerate of each other.
Supporting the Other Parent’s Relationship
Each of the parents should support the relationship the children have with the other parent. This is true even if each of the parents have different parenting lifestyles. Each of the parent should go out of their way to keep the other parent up to date with regard to the activities, sports, social situations and educational issues faced by the parties’ children. Yes, the parents are divorced but No they should not allow their negative feelings about each other to burst onto the surface and impact how their children are being raised.
You and Your Ex Spouse
Sometimes parents feel the necessity of questioning their children about what they do when they spend time with the other parent. This should be avoided. Children should also not be made into messengers to convey information from one parent to the other parent. In talking to your children should you find a disagreement with how certain matters are being handled by your ex-spouse, you should discretely listen to your children. Thereafter, out of the children’s purview discuss your issues and problems regarding your ex-spouses conduct, or parenting decisions.