Some exes get along well and interact frequently as a family after separation, while others can barely stand the sight of each other.
Whatever your relationship with your ex may be, co-parenting is about working together to make sure your children feel safe, secure and loved. Here are a few tips that may help if you are new to co-parenting.
1. Stick to a schedule
Whether a court assigns you a co-parenting schedule or you agree upon one yourself, stick to that schedule. This provides some consistency for your children and reduces the need for arguments and confusion about when and where everyone should be.
2. Communicate effectively and respectfully with your ex
If you find it difficult to avoid arguing with your former partner when you speak, keep your communications to text or email. This helps prevent the escalation of disagreements and serves as documentation of any communications you may exchange about your children’s needs or schedules.
3. Keep your children out of arguments
If arguments between parents are inevitable, you should at least avoid arguing in front of your kids. They do not need to witness any animosity between you and your former partner.
4. Talk positively with your children about their time with your ex
When your children return from spending time with their other parent, talk about what they enjoyed about that time. Let your children feel comfortable discussing their other parent in a positive light.
Co-parenting is different for every set of co-parents. What works for some will not work for all. In all your exchanges and communications with your ex, keep the focus on your children’s needs, and find additional strategies that work well for your co-parenting situation.