Parents in North Carolina who are going through a divorce may have a strained relationship with one another, but they have the common goal of wanting to make sure their children have a safe, happy future. One way to accomplish this is through co-parenting. Simply put, co-parenting means both parents will play an active role in their child’s life and will work together as a team with regards to raising their child post-divorce.
Tips for effective co-parenting post-divorce
Parents can co-parent whether they share physical custody of the child or whether one parent has physical custody of the child and the other parent has visitation rights. What is important is that their relationship is high-functioning. For example, agreeing to split certain costs such as extracurricular activities is one way that co-parents can work as a team with respect for one another.
When parents successfully co-parent, parenting time transitions can be less stressful for the child. Parents who show up on time to agreed-upon child custody exchanges show respect for one another, and the lack of drama makes the process easier for the child. The child also has a sense of safety when the agreed-upon child custody and visitation schedule is followed. In addition, it is key that co-parents understand that unexpected events come up, necessitating flexibility.
Co-parenting also means speaking positively about other adults involved in the child’s life, including your ex. Avoid bad-mouthing each other, which only makes the child feel forced to take sides. In addition, if co-parents need to inform one another of something, they should not make the child a go-between messenger. Instead they should privately call, text or email the information to the child’s other parent. This allows the child to have a stable, meaningful relationship with both parents.
Contact our firm for assistance with child custody issues
In the end, whether a parent shares joint physical custody of their child or whether one parent has primary physical custody and the other parent has visitation with the child, co-parenting can help provide a child with the security and support needed to thrive. It is important, then, that during the divorce process a parenting plan is developed that both parents agree to and find fair and feasible. In order to ensure your rights and your child’s rights are protected, it is important to seek the advice of compassionate, highly knowledgeable attorneys. Please contact our law firm for more information.