Child custody and co-parenting: How to get along

During the divorce process, you’re sure to focus a lot of time on child custody and related issues. Once you have a parenting plan and visitation agreement in place, it should be easier for both you and your ex to stay the course to provide your children with stability.

There are sure to be challenges when it comes to co-parenting after divorce, but there are steps you can take to maintain the peace. Here are some ideas to consider:

  • Have an effective communication plan: You don’t want to talk to your ex, but since you’re co-parenting you don’t necessarily have a choice. You can communicate in many ways, ranging from phone calls to text messages. Find a plan that works for the both of you and stick with it.
  • Put your children first: When it comes to co-parenting, make sure you always put the well-being of your children above your own interests. It’s a mistake to let your own feelings get in the way of what’s best for your children. For example, don’t fall into the trap of disparaging your ex to your children, as it will only add to the tension.
  • Follow your parenting agreement: One of the most important things you did during your divorce was create a parenting agreement and visitation plan. You didn’t do this for fun. You did it so you have something to lean on when co-parenting. Now’s the time to put it to good use.
  • Take the high road: There are sure to be times when your ex is looking for an argument. If you stoop to their level, it’s easy to blow things sky high and have a huge fight on your hands. But if you take the high road, you can avoid this altogether in an attempt to keep the peace. There are ways to defend yourself without stooping to your ex’s level.

Co-parenting is a two-way street, so you hope that your ex is willing to take steps to maintain a cordial relationship. If they intentionally make decisions to harm you or violate your parenting agreement, learn more about your legal rights for requesting a modification. It’s a step you may have no choice but to take.

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