Tips for Co-Parenting When You and Your Ex Do Not Get AlongBy Moskowitz Law Group, LLC |
Going through a divorce is challenging enough on its own. Tensions can be exacerbated when you must co-parent with your ex-spouse.
While it can be tough to see eye-to-eye with your co-parent, you both have the same shared priority: the best interests of your children. There are steps you can take to ease a strained relationship with your child’s other parent and move forward cordially. Here are some tips for co-parenting when you and your ex do not get along.
You do not have to be friends with your ex after the divorce to be successful co-parents. While being friends might make the transition to divorced life easier, there are many ways to promote a healthy relationship. Treating co-parenting like a business can keep you and your ex on the same page.
Draw boundaries, and do not pester one another with questions that do not involve parenting your children. Set rules and provide open lines of communication. Both you and your ex should be able to speak about your children, from how they behave to issues they are having at school. Consistent parenting practices help form a stable foundation for your children to grow.
Be a Role Model
As tempting as it may be to comment on your ex, you should refrain from talking poorly about your former spouse in front of your children. The greater respect you and your spouse have for each other, the more comfortable your children will be with the co-parenting arrangement.
Disrespecting your ex-spouse in front of your children can lead to parental alienation, which is when a child does not want to have a relationship with one of their parents because of manipulation by the other parent. Alienation can be incredibly upsetting and confusing. Involving kids in adult drama can cause broad consequences for the future, instilling feelings of insecurity. Take the high road to keep your children at ease.
Manage Your Expectations
Your spouse was not an ideal partner or parent during your marriage. A settlement agreement, order, or judgment of the Court is not going to suddenly transform them into an ideal parent. While these mechanisms can define each of your rights and responsibilities as co-parents, they will not change who your ex-spouse is as a person or parent. It is often in your children’s best interests and best for your emotional well-being to recognize this and choose your battles accordingly. Divorce should free you and your child up for future happiness, not keep you stuck in what made you decide to leave the marriage in the first place! You must preserve your resources for any serious issues or disagreements that may happen in the future instead of using up your resources on more trivial issues that may be more about your disagreements with your ex-spouse rather than the best interests of your child. The Court also likes to see that co-parents have worked out as many issues as possible before involving the Court.
When You Feel Lost, Reach Out for Help
Managing a divorce with children is difficult, but you do not have to face this change in your life alone. Whether you are considering a divorce or struggling with co-parenting after your separation, contact the knowledgeable family law attorneys at Moskowitz Law Group. We are happy to answer your questions and walk you through your legal options.