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Some tips for successful co-parenting

For newly-divorced parents, the goal of successful co-parenting is one that many hope to attain. Unfortunately, the feelings caused by the divorce, especially one that wasn't too friendly, can make it difficult for either person to be a successful co-parent. Here are some tips that might make this very important task a bit easier.

-- Scheduling can happen with a lot of organization. There are several apps available for your iPhone or Android cellphone that are specifically for separated or divorced parents. You can list all of the child's school and after-school activities, as well as doctor's appointments and who is picking up the kids. Using an app like those will make it easier on the children and on both of you.

-- Focus on your own lane. It's important for you to remain in your own lane and avoid comparing yourself to others -- especially if one of the "others" is someone your ex is dating. Don't work so hard to be the popular parent, because that can backfire right in your face.

-- Compromise is always an answer. Avoid using your children as a go-between. Doing so can make them feel stressed or anxious. You may have to use email or texts to convey your messages to your ex if the feelings are simply too raw at the month. By keeping your feelings reined in, you will help create a calmer environment for your children.

Co-parenting isn't always easy, but it's just as important as parenting in a marriage that stays together. If you feel there is a problem that needs to be addressed legally, talk to your divorce attorney. A modification in child custody arrangements may be needed.

Source: Huffington Post, "5 Tips for Co-Parenting," James J. Sexton, Sep. 29, 2015

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