Few, if any, co-parenting relationships are plain sailing. Even when parents are happily married, they often disagree on things. Disagreeing is fine. It is how you disagree that matters.
Talking things over and negotiating your way to a compromise is constructive. Shouting at each other and sticking to your polar opposite points of view is not. It applies to determining parenting arrangements as part of your divorce and implementing them once the divorce is done.
Here are some ways to help your co-parenting relationship go more smoothly:
- Set boundaries
If your ex or someone in their household harms or endangers your child when they are with them, then you need to speak up or even get a court involved. Other than that, you should probably stay out of what goes on in the other parent’s household. Likewise, they should let you run your household in your manner.
That does not mean you cannot set some rules that apply across both households. For instance, you might agree your child should be home by 7 p.m. on school nights wherever they are. Yet, if your spouse makes an exception one night when the child is with them, that is their business, not yours, unless it endangers your child.
- Help each other out
Help my ex, you say? After all, they did? Yes, because helping them with your child is helping your child. If your ex cannot collect the child from after-school classes, even though it is their turn, they will not be one waiting all alone at the school gates. Your child will.
- Talk to each other
If your ex is a master manipulator, calling or talking face to face may be damaging for you. You may need to keep communication to a minimum and via email or text only. Yet, in all cases, you need to have a way to discuss matters relating to your child. The better you can communicate, the better for your child.
Getting help to handle matters related to your children in your divorce efficiently and with as little conflict as possible will help to improve your chances of a successful co-parenting relationship.