Trying to find your way during a divorce can be a challenging situation that becomes even more complex if you have children. You have to ensure that you’re helping them so they can thrive.
One way that you can do this is to work closely with your co-parent. You’ll probably need to make some changes to how you handle certain situations, but remaining part of a parenting team can be beneficial.
Setting the standard
You need to set the standard for what’s going to happen in your house. Your children might kick against any changes, but letting them know what to expect now can help them as they adjust. Don’t coddle them in the early days because this can set a precedent that’s hard to overcome. They need rules and consistency, so providing these from the start helps.
Differences in parenting styles
You and your ex likely won’t have the same styles of parenting. You have to remember that as long as your children are safe and healthy, you don’t need to interfere with what’s going on. Just like you want to be able to parent your children in the way you feel is best, your ex wants the same thing. The only exceptions should be if something places your kids in danger or if it goes against the parenting plan.
Watch your words
What you say about your ex can impact your children, especially if they are around to hear it. Instead of speaking negatively of your ex, try to point out the positive parenting traits that are present and help your children to focus on building a relationship with them. If you feel the need to discuss the negative aspects of your ex, do it with a trusted confidante or a counselor, and only do this when the children aren’t around.
You should empower your children to make some decisions about their life now. What you shouldn’t do is try to force them to choose one parent over the other. Instead, help them look at the pros and cons of all choices so they can make the one that they feel is best.
Your parenting plan is the cornerstone of the relationship now. It should include the terms that you and your ex will comply with. This includes the parenting time schedule and all decision-making powers. Knowing this up front can make things easier and take a lot of the stress out of the situation.