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Six Ways to Make Co-Parenting Less Stressful
Co-parenting can be difficult, stressful and heart wrenching; however, successful co-parenting is the one thing you must learn to do in order to raise happy, healthy and emotionally secure children. Yet, the thought of effectively communicating and compromising with your ex can be the last thing you want to do. You must remember that the relationship between you and your ex, with all the button pushing, angry feelings and resentment is just that, a relationship between you and you ex. It is not between you, your ex and your kids. No matter how you feel about your former significant other, your children still love him/her and are entitled to have a stress free and loving relationship with them without interference from you and vice versa. With that being said, here are six ways to make co-parenting less stressful.
- Check your Feelings at the Door: This may seem harsh, but it is a must! Check your feelings at the door, and don’t allow anyone else to control your behavior because of your feelings. Always focus on the fact that effective co-parenting is in the best interest of your child. Your child’s emotions and well-being are much more important than being right or showing your ex how you feel.
- Don’t Bash the Other Parent: When you speak negatively about your child’s other parent in front of them, they may begin to feel they are bad for loving someone who you obviously feel is inferior. Don’t bash the other parent or their family in hearing of your children or anyone that will repeat it in front of the children.
- There’s an App for That: If you find extensive communication is more than you can accomplish with your ex, there’s an app for that. There are several apps and websites that cater to co-parenting couples. You can share important information, schedules, medical appointments, etc… without having a face to face conversation.
- Be Flexible: Try your best to be flexible when it comes to schedules, pick up and drop off times and activities. If your ex needs to bring the kids back 30 minutes late because he wants to take them to the local pumpkin patch, try to accommodate him. Not stressing little issues can go a long way in restoring some communication and some type of post-divorce relationship.
- Doubles: Make sure your children have doubles of simple items so they don’t have to continually pack as much stuff to transition between homes. Things like toothbrushes, pajamas, toys, movies, and play clothes should be a staple of both homes.
- Respect the Other Parent: Respect the other parent as a parent. You may have no good feelings or respect for them as a person and certainly not as a spouse, but nothing will change the fact that you created children together. That should be the focus. Show respect for your ex as the parent of your children if nothing else.
These six ways to make co-parenting less stressful can be your lifeline to creating a good situation for your children and eventually building a post-divorce relationship with your ex.