If you are in the process of a divorce, or recently divorced, one of the biggest challenges you may face is how to successfully co-parent with your previous spouse. Both you and your ex-spouse will play an important role in your children’s lives, and they need both of you to be emotionally available for them. This emotional stability will provide security for them during this tumultuous time.
Your children are likely one of your greatest concerns throughout the divorce process. Learning the do’s and don’ts of good co-parenting can make the experience infinitely easier for them.
Do’s and Don’ts
The following is a listing of do’s and don’ts needed for successful co-parenting. Consistently referring to these guidelines will help ensure that you are moving towards an amicable partnership with your ex-spouse with respect to your children.
- Do Speak Positively About Your Ex-Spouse. While you may still harbor resentment and frustration toward your ex-spouse regarding the divorce, never speak negatively about them around your children.
- Don’t Side with Your Child Against the Other Parent. Never take the side of your child against the other parent, even if you feel they are right. Make sure to explain that there are two sides to every story and everyone has different feelings regarding certain situations.
- Don’t Argue with Your Ex-Spouse in Front of the Children. Never argue with your ex-spouse in front of your children. It only makes them frightened, frustrated and confused.
- Do Follow the Visitation Schedule. Always make sure to directly follow the visitation schedule, and ensure that the other parent has access to your child both physically and emotionally.
- Don’t React in the Same Way as When You Were Married. If you were married for any significant period, you likely have certain patterns of behavior with respect to your ex-spouse. Try to avoid falling into those patterns and reacting in the same way that breeds resentment and hostility.
- Do Keep Your Ex-Spouse in the Loop. Always communicate with your ex-spouse regarding the needs of your children. Talk to them frequently about the activities and academic requirements of your child and consider sharing a Google calendar to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
- Do Keep Communication Open. Make sure to communicate often with your ex-spouse regarding all the aspects of your child and attempt to cooperate with them as much as possible.
- Don’t Force Your Child to Take a Side. Never force your child to take a side between you and your ex-spouse. They should have an easy role within the relationship and be allowed to remain neutral and receive love from both parents.
- Compare Notes with Your Ex-Spouse About Your Child. Your child should always come first, and if there are situations that occur, you should always visit with your ex-spouse regarding how to handle the situations to ensure that your children receive similar messages.
Contact a Divorce Attorney Today
If you are in the process of a divorce or are recently divorced, your primary cause for concern may be how your children will adjust to their new normal. Contact the Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers at 714-500-8428 or online today for a free consultation and to help you make decisions regarding your child in the divorce process.