In joint custody arrangements, the well-being of your children comes first. You may have differing perspectives about parenting decisions, but your ability to amicably navigate those differences will have a positive impact on the emotional well-being of your children.
Cooperate For The Betterment Of Your Child
When children are a factor in your divorce, their best interests supersede all other interests of the divorce. Make an effort to settle financial expectations, the nature of your child’s education, their health care needs, and other sensitive child custody disagreements amicably whenever possible.
When co-parenting, remember that you and your ex-partner are responsible for setting a healthy example for your children. Modeling cooperation and compromise will help minimize potential negative emotional impacts of the divorce for everyone involved – especially for your children.
Keep Disagreements Between You and Your Ex – Not Your Kids
While you may not agree with every decision your ex makes, you and your co-parent should work together to present a united front when your children are present. If you air out negative feelings about your ex-partner in front of your children, you risk contributing to increased confusion about the family dynamic and could accidentally undermine you and your ex’s parental authority. While it may be tempting, refrain from sharing these natural feelings about your ex with your children.
Know Where To Turn For Support
Joint custody can be an emotionally taxing experience. Prioritizing your child’s well-being throughout the process also means prioritizing your own mental health and well-being.
Parental intentionality begins with an awareness of your own emotions and how to manage them appropriately. You can hone this skill set by establishing a relationship with a therapist who specializes in helping clients navigate joint custody arrangements. You may also choose to turn to a trusted friend or family member when you need a sounding board.
The nature of your support system is crucial. Never post co-parenting frustrations on social media. Doing so increases the likelihood that your children will become aware of – and potentially confused by – these frustrations. In addition, these posts may be used by your ex’s legal team to establish a custody arrangement that does not reflect your parenting interests.