Ten More Co-Parenting Tips
Ten More Co-Parenting Tips (part 4)
by Guest Author Elinor Robin, Ph.D. with a little editing by Virginia L Colin, Ph.D.
31. Consider occasionally separating your children in order to give each parent some individual time with each child.
32. Introduce your child to neighborhood children she can play with at her second home.
33. Consider holding monthly family meetings, with a rotating chair, to discuss chores, problems, schedules, plans and challenges. (This usually works well with kids 8 to 14 years old and sometimes works well with teenagers.)
34. Coordinate with your co-parent so that school events, functions and activities are covered. Who will buy the school pictures? Who will handle field trips? Who will work the fund-raiser? Who will work on the science project? Who will buy the school supplies? Who will handle the teacher’s gift?
35. Don’t forget old family traditions and rituals – continue favorite traditions and maybe create some new ones.
36. Be willing to separate your needs from the needs of your children. Both sets of needs are important, and sometimes you have to make tough choices.
37. Keep parenting issues separate from money issues.
38. If possible, tell your children about the pending separation together before one parent leaves. Plan a transition time if you can.
39. Remember to tell your children:
[Interjection from Dr. Colin: Say these things only if you believe them! If not, do not poison your child’s mind against the other parent, but do not lie to your child.]
(a) Your father/mother and I made the choice to divorce because we thought it would be best for everyone.
(b) Both your father/mother and I love you and will always love you. The love that a parent has for a child never ends.
(c) Your mother/father and I are working together to make sure we take care of you.
(d) Your mother/father and I each have a special relationship with you. You can love us both and never feel that it means choosing between us.
40. Ensure that your dating partners and potential step-parents go slowly, stay out of the divorce, don’t interfere in a child’s relationship with either of his natural parents, and do not encourage the child to call them Mom or Dad.
More tips will follow in a future blog post. If you and your ex are having difficulty building a functional relationship as co-parents, consult with a co-parenting counselor or a family mediator.
Elinor Robin is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediator and Mediation Trainer. You can learn more about her at www.AFriendlyDivorce.com and www.MediationTrainingGroup.com. Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/3466787.
Virginia L Colin, Ph.D., is a Professional Family Mediator certified by the Virginia Supreme Court. She is not an attorney or a therapist. For a free consultation about whether family mediation would be helpful for you, contact her at mediatorQ@gmail.com or 703 864 2101.