There is nothing easy about separating families, especially when these separations involve children. However, there are ways to make the process easier.
In fact, many courts want to see children spend quality time with both parents, and if the separation is not amicable, child custody transitions can be challenging. Therefore, these are a few co-parenting tips that should process easier for you and your children.
Maintain open, effective communication
Divorce often results from poor communication practices in the marriage. If you and your former spouse have difficulty communicating, you can experience child custody and co-parenting challenges. However, you should agree on major issues, such as education preferences, healthcare and mental health. Also, set guidelines for friends, schedules and appropriate behaviors.
Find the most effective method of communication, e.g., phone calls, in-person meetings or text messages, and create an open dialog. Share your children’s highs and lows with each other, solve problems together, and never argue in front of your children.
Build a consistent schedule
Agree on a set schedule in your parenting plan. Then, keep it. If an emergency comes up, be amenable, and if you want to change your custody periods temporarily, give your co-parent enough notice to make arrangements.
Keep accurate documentation
For legal purposes, you should document every visitation and interaction with your children and co-parent. However, you should also write down information about your children to share with your spouse. For example, if you find that your child is allergic to foods, insect bites or vegetation, it is vital that you document and share this information with your spouse.
To create a positive co-parenting environment, foster quick, positive child custody exchanges, but protect your children by leaving major discussions for private conversations. Set aside your hurt and anger, and focus on your children’s needs.