If you and your soon-to-be ex are planning on child custody and co-parenting, it’s a good idea to know the main do’s and don’ts involved with a successful attempt. Here are seven tips that can help you and your ex co-parent your children with optimal results.
1. Make a Plan With Your Ex
This means that during the preparations for divorce, you and your ex will need to set aside your differences and put your kids first. Discuss the possibilities of child custody and co-parenting. Try to find out what moves you can both make that will benefit your children as they get used to their parents being divorced.
2. Negotiate the Logistics with Your Lawyers
Planning out the minute details of your co-parenting plan with your family law attorney present is a good idea. These negotiations usually go beyond who should get primary custody and examine:
- Special Events
- General Visitation
3. Commit to Making Co-Parenting an Open Dialogue
Regardless of where you and your ex may be emotionally during the divorce process, this “do” is important. Open dialogue doesn’t even mean you have to be face-to-face. Simply arrange to keep each other updated by means that make you comfortable. Text, email. And quick voice messages are great ways to keep your ex in the loop while also ensuring that the peace is maintained.
4. Create an Extended Family Plan
Extended family can be important influences on a child. Consider what role extended family members should play and how their visits should tie in with your custody decisions. If you have questions about the type of access that should be granted to extended family, your divorce lawyer will be able to help you come to a comfortable decision.
1. Don’t Jump to Conclusions
If your child comes back and says something about your ex that makes you irritated, it’s best to take a breath and think about the negative comments your child is expressing. Trying to stay neutral is the best option because picking either side on a whim could create distrust and resentment from your child.
2. Don’t Use Your Child to “Get Back at Your Ex”
Co-parenting is not a competition to show who is the better parent. Your children are what come first in these situations, so being the “fun” parent doesn’t necessarily help things. Try to keep your visits normal, structured, and somewhat predictable. Some unexpected fun is welcome every once in a while, but going overboard isn’t fair to anyone involved.
3. Don’t Force Your Child to Pick Sides
Co-parenting is a joint effort. In the majority of situations when co-parenting is involved, this is because there is love for both parents from the children of the marriage. Even if you are still resentful of your ex, bad-mouthing them or pitting your children against them is an emotionally unhealthy maneuver in what should be a stable situation.
Arrange Your Child Custody Plans The Right Way, With Marx, Altman & Johnson
If you are going through a divorce and are trying to navigate child custody or child support, let the professionals at Marx, Altman & Johnson Help. We have experience in these and similar areas of divorce. Contact us today to find out more about our services.