Colorado courts take a relatively progressive approach to divorce and custody issues. In fact, Colorado no longer refers to splitting up responsibilities for a child as custody. Instead, they refer to both parenting time and the right to make decisions as parental responsibilities. They expect both parents to contribute to the well-being of the children from the marriage and to perform certain responsibilities on behalf of the children, such as making medical decisions.
The courts take the responsibility to allocate parental responsibilities very seriously. They will always act in what they perceive is the best interest of the child, rather than how the parents want them to. Educating yourself about how Colorado courts approach parental responsibility can help ensure a positive outcome in your case.
Shared parental responsibilities are standard in divorce
Long gone are the days when the courts preferred to award custody to one parent and relegate the other to only visitation. Modern divorces are much more likely to end up with an even split of parental responsibilities.
Divorced parents often share parenting time and decision-making authority for the children from the marriage. You and your ex will need to work together to support one another and do right by your children. It can be hard to imagine a healthy co-parenting relationship during a divorce, but that should be your goal.
In fact, publicly fighting with your ex or attempting to prevent them from visitation or custody rights could hurt your case with the courts. If the judge views you as hostile to shared parenting, that may skew the outcome in favor of your ex.
Working together benefits you as well as the children
Kids are much more intelligent than people generally give them credit for. It won't take a child long after their parents separate to realize they can play the parents against one another.
If you and your ex do not agree on how to raise your children, the kids will figure that out. They will put you against one another and use it to their benefit. You and your ex need to get on the same page as far as how you raise your children. That will make performing your parental responsibilities easier for both of you.
A parenting plan helps establish expectations
Creating a detailed parenting plan is the perfect way to approach parenting after a divorce. You and your ex will need to agree on issues like setting a curfew, expectations for grades and what age is appropriate for dating.
Barring that, you can expect a lot of conflict with your ex after the divorce and difficulty in disciplining your child and providing a stable childhood and adolescence. Setting aside your feelings for one another to focus on the kids is typically the best approach.