While the word co-parenting suggests cooperation, many ex-couples find this difficult. If you are having trouble with your ex, it’s crucial to realize that there may be ways to make things easier.
Rather than trying to make them change or accept your point of view, you may be able to do things that reduce the opportunity for problems.
Here are a few possibilities:
Keep contact to a minimum
This is not ideal, as you have a lot still to discuss as parents and will do for years to come. Yet, sometimes it is the best option you have. Remember that conflict can be exhausting for you and damaging to your children, so if reducing contact reduces conflict, consider it worth trying.
Ways you can do this are:
- Use a parenting app: They give you an electronic space to communicate without having to constantly worry that it’s your ex when you hear your phone ring or a message or email notification ping. They also allow you to run a calendar that everyone can see and edit, including your kids, if you wish. It reduces the chance of late or missed pick-ups, which can be incredibly distressing for your child as well as annoying for you.
- Each parent your own way: Sometimes, parallel parenting is better than co-parenting. It means you just let each other get on with it in their way when the kids are with them. If you accept that most of the choices you disagree with are not really going to harm your kid, then it prevents you from arguing about how to parent.
Learning more about how you can tailor your custody agreement to reduce issues is a good place to start.