Deciding to end your marriage can be a big change in your life. Divorce can also mark a big change in the lives of your children.
In the U.S. in 2018, 782,038 divorces and annulments occurred, states the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Divorce and coparenting are common experiences for many people and their children, and there are steps you can take to form an effective co-parenting arrangement.
1. Schedule regular appointments with your ex
Whether by phone, video chat or in-person, sit down with your ex regularly to talk about your children. Discuss what is working, what is not working, the needs of your children, scheduling and other issues related to your co-parenting relationship.
2. Try to stay flexible
Life happens, and the guidelines you and your ex outlined in your co-parenting plan may not be perfect. Try to stay flexible when things do not go according to plan and give your ex the benefit of the doubt when possible.
3. Speak positively about your ex in front of your kids
After getting divorced, it may be difficult to refrain from speaking negatively about your former spouse. Try not do this in front of your children, and if the topic of your ex does come up, attempt to keep the tone of the conversation positive.
Co-parenting effectively takes practice and continual effort from both parents. Commit to communicate with your ex respectfully and always put your children first, and your co-parenting relationship will likely improve as time passes.