Happy Co-Parenting Tips for Separated Parents
If a divorce is your only option for an emotionally happy, healthy and stable life, you want to make your children are a priority. While it may not be easy to disregard money problems or an infidelity that caused the divorce, your children are going to benefit when you put aside your differences.
Avoid Placing Children in the Middle
As a parent, you probably do everything that you can to help protect your child the moment that they are born. In addition to ensuring that the toys they play with are safe and toxic-free, you want them to also feel secure knowing that they are loved by both parents. If your separation is less than amicable, you may have some animosity pent up. Instead of laying your feelings out for the entire world to see, you want to remember that these issues shouldn’t affect your children. While it may seem simple to pass on a message, your children shouldn’t be the mail carriers that relay information back to your spouse.
Separate Your Feelings
Any solid divorce attorney is going to tell you this from the start. Motions and facts play an integral part in your divorce proceedings, not feelings. Their knowledge and experience can be used to help you attain child support and provide your children with a better life. It’s fine to feel angry or hurt with your spouse, and the situation they may have placed you in as a family. However, this animosity and discord doesn’t have to dictate the way that you act out. A therapist can be a great outlet where you voice your displeasure one-on-one. When you find your feelings of anger and pettiness coming to the surface, picture the images of your children and place their interests first.
Effective parenting can help promote your children’s self-esteem and happiness. Instead of wallowing in self-pity and anger, try to stay involved with your child’s activities. Whether its school, baseball, cheerleading, soccer or band, you can put forth an effort to be an active participant in everything that they do. You can also make a pact with your partner to attend parent conferences, birthday celebrations and holidays together by getting along.
Develop a Parent Plan
Seeing the pain of divorce in your child’s eyes can be hard to take as a parent. While some may go overboard and allow their children free rein, it’s in your child’s best interest to have a parenting plan in place. This means that both parents sign an agreement stating you rules about bedtime, curfews, computer and cellphone usage and television. If a child gets out of hand, you should also decide upon disciplinary measures such as being grounded. Conflicts between parents may make it difficult for you to correspond. A mediator can provide you with suggestions on how to get along.
Show Your Love
Children will often blame themselves for a parents break-up. Since they may be too young to understand the difficulties of a relationship and marriage, it’s your job as a parent to show your love for your children. In addition to keeping the lines of communication open by allowing them to talk about their feelings, you also want to reassure them through hugs and loving words of support.
Enjoy a Non-Traditional Relationship
Divorce rates are at an all-time high. While you may no longer have a family with both a mom and dad living under one roof, you can enjoy the non-traditional variety. Through this separation, your children will get to see their parents take on different roles in the household such as a mom cutting the lawn or a dad cooking. You can also strengthen your relationship through one-on-one bonding such as going to the movies together, out for a family dinner with just you and the kids or sitting around the dinner table discussing your busy day.