Raising children in a co-parenting relationship after divorce

Take the time to learn how to co-parent effectively after going through a divorce.

When two parents decide to get divorced, the most important factor in most people's minds will be the wellbeing of the children. While divorce can be a challenge for any family, there are some ways to make the transition a little easier for both the kids and adults involved.

Try to maintain effective communication lines with your ex

One of the most important - and often most challenging - aspects of co-parenting after a dissolution of marriage is learning how to communicate amicably with your former spouse about your children.

In many cases, you would probably prefer to never interact with your ex - or at least have very limited interaction - after the split. When children are involved, however, that is typically not a possibility, particularly when you have joint custody.

If you find that you and your ex tend to argue every time you speak in person, consider an alternate method of communication. Maybe you can get the information across via an email or text message most of the time. Written communication is often easier to manage, as you can ensure you avoid sensitive topics that have nothing to do with raising the children.

Above all, make sure you are not using your children as intermediaries. You want your children to be comfortable with both parents, and using them to send messages from one to the other can complicate matters.

Consider the example you are providing to your children

While divorce can be emotionally difficult - for you, your former spouse and your children - this can also be an opportunity for you to demonstrate positive coping mechanisms to your children.

When your children have questions about the divorce or express their concerns about the future, take the time to sit down and talk to them about their worries. Demonstrating that you are always willing to listen and talk to them when they are upset will help them feel more comfortable with the process.

Do the best you can

At the same time, it is also a good idea to remember that you are going through what can be a difficult transition. If you are having a tough day, don't be afraid to admit it and talk to a friend or relative about the challenges you are facing.

You will only be able to be the best version of yourself for your children if you have a place to express your fears and frustrations. Of course, finding another adult for those conversations is necessary, as you do not want to involve your children in the adult problems taking place between you and your former spouse.

Talk to an attorney about your family law issues

One of the best ways to ease your mind when going through a divorce is to seek the counsel of a knowledgeable family law attorney. You need the energy to focus on your children's wellbeing. Retaining a skilled attorney will ensure your interests are protected throughout the divorce.