The choices you make during your divorce will have a direct impact on your future and the lives of your kids. Even after the process is final, the things you do and say can have an effect on your children, especially when it comes to a tricky co-parenting situation. It may not be easy to work closely with a former spouse, but it is worthwhile to make this as peaceful as possible for your kids’ sake.

Many Virginia parents choose to co-parent because it provides an opportunity to maintain a strong relationship with both of them. This can be difficult to navigate, especially when there are lingering hard feelings and complex issues to work through. However, parents would do well to focus on maintaining good communication, which directly impacts how well they co-parent.

The impact of communication

Kids see and absorb much of what their parents do and say. If one parent is constantly talking negatively about the other one, complaining about the visitation schedule or undermining the role that parent has in the life of the child, it will have an effect. Kids also notice when two parents communicate disrespectfully or have a hard time talking with each other peacefully.

When communication is rough or breaks down completely, there is evidence that this can have a psychological impact on children. They may feel torn between parents or feel unsure about how they should perceive one or both of them. This is stressful and ultimately unfair for the youngest members of the family. 

Keeping the peace

One way that you can communicate better and keep the peace in your co-parenting relationship is to strive to uphold the role that the other parent has in the life of your children. Regardless of how you feel about him or her, both parents are crucial in the upbringing and emotional health of a child. It will benefit your kids to see both of you being supportive and cooperative with each other.

Start with a good plan

The foundation of any good co-parenting arrangement is a thoughtful custody order. When discussing terms, think about what will be good long term and will provide the most benefit to your children. It’s much easier to work together well when there is a solid plan in place that allows for consistency and cooperation. 

If you wish to co-parent after your divorce, you may want to talk with an experienced family law attorney about this option. Experienced guidance will help you make smart choices that will positively impact your family for years to come.