When you're going through a divorce, there is a chance that it could be contentious. As a result, you may feel like the other parent is acting in a way that should make it possible for you to obtain sole custody of your child. You should take a deep breath and think carefully before you decide to pursue that idea, since your child's best interests may be to have you and the other parent share custody.
Co-parenting is one of the best things that people can do for their child if there is the opportunity to do it. However, co-parenting does take management. That means that you and the other parent may need to regularly check in with one another and talk about issues you could be having. It's harder to co-parent when you're separated, but it is possible if you're willing to talk through disputes and agree to participate to the fullest.
What makes co-parenting so good for children?
Co-parenting is good for children because it keeps them in a similar situation as what they've always known. Both parents are still on the same team when it comes to raising the children, so the rules and expectations also stay the same between homes. This can make the divorce less complicated from a child's point of view.
What can you do to have a better co-parenting experience?
It isn't always easy to work with an ex-spouse, but when it comes to your child, your child has to come first. You may both be great parents but disagree on how to parent, and that's okay. There are options such as mediation and therapy that can help you both come to agreements on how to raise your child.
Another great idea is to put down the co-parenting terms on paper. You can have a contract or just an informal agreement. You should both write down things such as:
- An agreement to respect one another
- An agreement to discuss problems with your child or children before deciding on punishments
- Bed times that work best for your child
- Non-negotiable parts of your child's routine that should be expected in each home
- An agreement not to disparage the other parent in front of the child
If you're both able to work together to make a solid agreement to parent in the best interests of your child, then you'll be on the right path to becoming great divorced co-parents.