After a divorce it can be difficult to start thinking about developing a co-parenting plan to reduce ongoing stress and anxiety; however, it is very important that parents think ahead so that they can reduce the impact on their children. Amicable co-parenting can create a stable and safe environment for your children so that you aren’t exhausted by undue worry. Many attorneys suggest that divorcing parents create a family plan to think about how to navigate moving forward with their relationship with one another, recognizing that co-parenting with an ex-spouse can be quite difficult.
We understand that joint custody agreements can be exhausting, especially if you have had a difficult divorce. It can be difficult to overcome the painful history that you may have with your ex-partner and put your feelings aside in order to look into the best interest of your children. Co-parenting between divorced parents still involves making shared decisions, interacting with one another at drop-offs, and speaking to one another occasionally about what is going on in your children’s lives. A positive relationship between the divorced parents can have benefits for the children involved. For example, researchers have found that co-parenting allows children to feel as though the divorce is not their fault, which increases their sense of consistency and security.
It can be difficult to focus on the needs of your children when you are navigating through your own feelings surrounding the divorce. Setting aside your feelings for the interest of your children may be your most difficult task. One way to help you monitor your feelings, or find a place to put them, is to recruit additional support from friends, family, counselors, or therapists. A strong support system of people who can listen to your feelings helps you avoid venting to your children, while also giving you the proper space to release your feelings. It is important that you never put your children in the middle of an argument between you and your ex-spouse. Attorneys and people who work with children of divorced parents suggest not using your children as messengers and discussing your issues with your ex-spouse directly with them.
You may need to set boundaries around communication with your ex-spouse as well. You can think about communication with your ex-spouse as a business partnership, in which you have the best interest of your children in mind. You can keep a business-like tone when talking to your ex-spouse, make specific requests and agreements, and commit to talking and meeting consistently. If you keep your relationships kid focused then you will be able to meet their needs without having to resolve your own thoughts and feelings. You may need additional time following the divorce in order to process your feelings before thinking about developing a family plan.
Co-parenting with an ex-spouse is no easy task. The tone of a co-parenting relationship is often set during the divorce process. If you would like additional help with your divorce or need an attorney then you can contact Ayers Family Law at 843-628-2871 for additional information and legal advice.