Co-parenting involves parents continuing to work as a team even after they split up. This isn’t always the easiest arrangement for the adults, but it’s one that’s often best for their children.
Making the co-parenting situation as easy as possible should be priority for everyone involved. There are several ways that you might make this happen. These five points are a good starting point.
#1: Communicate respectfully and directly
Always speak directly to your co-parent instead of trying to relay messages through the children. Remain respectful, even when it’s hard to do so. It helps some parents to think of this as a business relationship so they can stay calm through disagreements.
#2: Be willing to compromise on the schedule
Compromising on the parenting time schedule is one way that you can help your children. As long as both parents are doing this, the children will have more opportunities afforded to them. These changes may be because of a special event, out of town family members coming to town or the parent’s work schedule.
#3: Encourage your children to have positive relationships
Positive relationships with both parents and family members on both sides can help the children. They may feel bad about having a good time when you aren’t with them, so be sure you encourage them to enjoy their time with your ex and that side of the family.
#4: Start new traditions
New traditions give you and the children something to look forward to. The traditions you had when you were with your ex might not be possible. By building your own traditions with the children, you can help them to feel more secure about the co-parenting arrangement, which will make the situation easier for everyone.
#5: Set common rules
It’s sometimes best if the parents can work as a team to get common rules set between both homes. This might be for the bigger things, such as bedtime or requirements for going out with friends. Providing consistency between the homes can help the children to feel more comfortable since they don’t have to worry about keeping the rules for each house straight.
One of the best ways you can make co-parenting as easy as possible is to get the parenting plan set quickly. This gives both parents guidelines they need to raise the children. It should be based on the child’s needs now and can be modified as those needs change.