Co-parenting after a divorce can be hard. Even if you and your ex-spouse did not divorce on good terms, you need to work together to help your children grow into successful, well-adjusted adults.
This is especially true as kids start the new school year. Divorced parents must figure out how to work together in order to ensure their children's success. Here are some helpful tips that can assist you and your ex-spouse as your children head back to school:
- Attend back-to-school night: Meet the teachers and prepare for a great year at school. With your ex, agree in advance that the night is about the kids and is not the time or place for conflict. Having both parents present will make your children feel supported.
- Keep a calendar visible at home: Mark school, sports and social activities as well as visitation time with each parent. Give your ex a list of important dates so both of you can prioritize and support your children.
- Have a study space at both homes: Homework flexibility ensures the children gain the most from their educational experience. Give your children space where they can concentrate and access the tools they need.
- Talk with your children: Discuss any issues from the day, school concerns or friendship problems. These routine chats build your relationship and provide your child with needed security. Make sure your kids know they can turn to either parent for help.
- Regularly communicate with your ex: Try to set aside personal differences and focus on meeting the needs of your children. In addition, posing a united front will prevent your kids from playing you and your ex against each other.
Successful co-parenting can be tricky, but it can be done if you and your ex focus on working together in the best interests of your children.
Source: Divorce Money Matters, "10 Back-to-School Co-Parenting Tips," Ellen Kellner, August 9, 2012.
For more information on handling child custody issues after a divorce, please visit our Child Custody & Modifications page.