If you’ve separated from a long-term partner in the past, the chances are that you have children who spend some time with you and some with your ex. This may be controlled by some sort of child custody or co-parenting agreement created by either mutual acceptance or ordered by the courts.
Unfortunately, co-parenting agreements can be a little complicated, and tempers can flare at times when people disagree with each other. Because of this, we’ve put together the following list of the top six tips to help you get the most out of your co-parenting agreement.
- Put Your Children’s Needs First
One of the most important things when it comes to co-parenting arrangements (and disagreements) is ensuring your children are always well looked after. It doesn’t matter how much you and your ex-partner disagree on things – in the end, your kids do have to come first. Remember that.
- Make Sure You Communicate Well
Meanwhile, it’s crucial to ensure you and your children’s other parent communicate well together, especially if your kids have special needs that need to be relayed. There are a few different strategies for ensuring effective communication, including:
- Using an online co-parenting tool designed to take the stress and emotion out of the situation.
- By meeting from time to time to update each other on your children’s progress.
- Going through some sort of facilitator.
In the end, you should go for some communication method that’s efficient, that doesn’t make you angry or overly emotional, and that’s accepted by both parties.
- Make Clear Rules
You should always make sure you set clear rules for your children. Once again, you will likely have to discuss these with the other parent. For example, if you would like your child to follow a specific diet, make sure that this is noted and accepted by the other parent. You should also make rules about things like their social life, outings, and anything else that may be a major consideration.
- Make a Clear Routine
Co-parenting isn’t just hard for you and your ex-partner. In fact, it’s probably even harder for your children. To ease this burden, it’s a good idea to ensure you use a clear routine that your children are familiar with and comfortable with at all times.
- Use Clear Changeover Times
Changing parents can be a little complicated, especially if you don’t get on well with your ex. Try and fit changeovers into your children’s normal schedule, and wherever possible, use things like the end of the school day or a sports game.
- Try and Be Positive
This one’s a little different, but it’s amazing the difference having a positive mindset can make to your life. Wherever you can, try to remain positive about your current family situation, your children’s lives, and everything else that might seem a little difficult. Trust us, it works.
Although co-parenting can be a little difficult, it’s extremely important to ensure you’re not wasting time fighting with the other parent. The tips outlined in this article will help ensure you’re dealing with your co-parenting arrangement properly.
However, you can always consult with a family lawyer if you have problems. They will be able to advise you on the best course of action for your needs. Good luck!