Whether your divorce is amicable or not, keeping any shared children at the heart of all matters will ensure fair custody and healthy kids. When you divorce with kids, focusing on their situation and creating a fair custody agreement is crucial to their successful development. If you do end up in a joint custody situation, co-parenting becomes an essential task for ensuring your kids happiness and health.
What Is Co-Parenting?
Co-parenting is when a divorced couple with children arranges to jointly raise the children although they may no longer live in the same household. Both parents agree to participate in and are responsible for their child’s social life, care, and upbringing. Co-parenting typically involves both parents being in frequent contact to communicate about their children.
What Should You Not Do When Co-Parenting?
Even for the most friendly of divorces, co-parenting is hard. Not only do you not have 24/7 supervision over your child anymore, but you also have to trust in your ex-spouse to do the right thing, which can be difficult for many people. When you are co-parenting, here are some things you should avoid doing:
- Talk badly about your ex-spouse in front of your child.
- Depend too much on your child for companionship because you are lonely.
- Try manipulating your child’s relationship with your ex.
- Use your child to get information about your ex.
- Turn family events into tense situations that no one wants to participate in.
The Keys To Successful Co-Parenting
The key to successful co-parenting is good communication. Though it can be a hard skill to master for a divorced couple (miscommunication is often why many couples divorce), constant and efficient communication about your child is key to a successful co-parenting relationship. Along with strong communication, other keys to successful co-parenting include being able to trust your ex-spouse and remaining cordial with them, especially when you’re in front of your kids.
Types Of Co-Parenting
There are many ways to co-parent, and not every co-parenting relationship is the same. However, there are three main types of co-parenting:
- Parallel Co-Parenting is the most common type of relationship. This is when parents have low conflict, communication, and emotional engagement. The two households function independently and there can often be inconsistency in the way the child is raised.
- Conflicted Co-Parenting occurs when the two parents experience frequent conflict, bad communication, and emotionally charged fights. Conflicted co-parenting can be harmful to a child’s growth.
- Cooperative Co-Parenting is the ideal co-parenting relationship. In this type of co-parenting, both parents plan, coordinate, and schedule together, often supporting one another in the challenges of parenting. There is little to no conflict in a cooperative co-parenting relationship.
Our Tips For Co-Parenting
If you’re looking to achieve a cooperative co-parenting relationship, here are our top tips for co-parenting:
- Set up a plan for effective communication and stay dedicated to it.
- Document every interaction you can to be prepared for any future legal issues.
- Never bring your child into problems with your ex-spouse.
- Create a set of co-parenting guidelines for you and your partner (i.e. agree to never talk negatively about one another in front of your children).
Child Custody Experts
At the Law Offices of Bloom and Rudibaugh, we help couples seeking divorce to reach a fair custody arrangement. We are here to help you protect your parental rights and ensure the best outcome for you and your children. Call our Hemet Law Office today at 951-652-1400 or our Murrieta/Temecula office at 951-296-5360 to schedule a consultation with our child custody lawyers.