If you know divorced couples with children, you will have noticed that co-parenting is not always easy. While some former couples seem to have put their differences aside, many find it hard to do so. Hence, disputes can be common.
If you are about to divorce – particularly if you have children — you should strive to get along. However, no matter how good your intentions are, it will be hard if your spouse insists on being difficult. What can you do to avoid every little thing becoming a problem?
Minimize opportunities for discord
If your co-parent tends to make a scene every time you hand over the kids, look for somewhere to make these transitions where they are less likely to do so. People who are happy to shout at you in your garden may be more reserved somewhere public such as a cafe.
Another option is to use a third party for handovers so that you do not come into contact with each other. Other family members might be able to help.
E-mail or text instead of calling
There will always be things to coordinate regarding the kids, and most people think more carefully about what they type than what they speak. The built-in delay, especially with e-mail, reduces the chance of a quickly escalating exchange of words.
Try to see things from their point of view
It may be that your spouse is intentionally difficult or mean. Nonetheless, if you can step out of yourself for a minute, you may get a different take on things and understand why they are behaving in a certain way.
Co-parenting is rarely easy, but if both of you work together, it increases the chance your child sees it as a success. It all starts with a well-crafted parenting plan.