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Co-Parenting Dos and Don’ts

You are officially single as soon as the court issues your divorce decree, but if your children are minors, divorce is not the end of your relationship with your ex-spouse. These are some ways to make life less stressful for yourself and your children when dealing with your ex. Depending on your relationship with your ex, you might be able to do or avoid these things on your own or with the help of relatives. If your ex is uncooperative or the two of you are on especially bad terms, you might need the help of Iwanyshyn & Associates, your Allison Park family law attorneys.

DO: Stick to Your Parenting Plan

Pennsylvania parenting plans are very detailed. They include details about which parent gets the children for which day of Thanksgiving break, who transports the children, and who decides which school sports the children can play. Your parenting plan is an official document. Making holiday plans at the last minute is not an option when you are co-parenting with your ex-spouse.

DON’T: Put Your Children in the Middle of Your Conflicts with Your Ex

No matter how angry you are about the things your ex does during his or her parenting time, don’t tell your children how much it bothers you, or they will think it is their fault. If your ex is late paying child support, vent to your friends or call your lawyer about enforcing the child support order, but don’t tell your kids that the reason you are stressed out is because of their parent.

DO: Ask Your Family and Friends for Help

No one can raise children all alone. Spending time with your parents, your siblings, and your children’s cousins will help your children feel like your family is still complete, even after your divorce. If you can’t stand to be in the same room with your ex, but your sister has superpowers that enable her to get along with everyone, have your ex drop your children off at her house, and then you pick them up a few minutes later.

DON’T: Move too Fast When Introducing Your Children to Your New Partner

For many children, seeing a parent start a new relationship is even more painful than their parents’ divorce. Your children are dealing with enough changes in their lives. Don’t insist on including your new partner in every family activity; your children need to spend time just with you, too. You can gradually increase the amount of time your children spend with your new partner and his or her family. Introducing a new stepparent and new stepsiblings to soon is a recipe for conflict.

DO: Ask a Lawyer for Help with Major Problems

Some co-parenting problems go away over time, but sometimes you need a lawyer’s help. If your ex-spouse refuses to pay child support, doesn’t let you exercise your parenting time, or tells your children malicious lies about you, contact your divorce attorney.

Iwanyshyn & Associates Helps Divorced Parents Resolve Co-Parenting Problems

Your parenting plan is a roadmap for conflict resolution after your divorce, but some co-parenting problems are so big that you need a lawyer’s help. Contact Iwanyshyn & Associates in Pittsburgh about child custody cases.