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Negotiating a parenting plan provides a unique opportunity

Just like every parent throughout the country, North Dakota parents often go through their daily lives on autopilot. During this time, they may find themselves at odds when it comes to disciplining the children, but they never quite get the time to sit down and discuss it in order to get on the same page.

When parents divorce, they gain a unique opportunity to talk about this important issue. If the negotiations go well, they could come to a consensus regarding how to discipline the children, which could help in their post-divorce co-parenting. The more consistent parents are across both households, the better off everyone will be. The children will know what to expect and they won't see either parent as "the bad guy," which could cause unnecessary confrontations.

Finding a way to work together on discipline

It may seem surprising that you could find some good in the midst of the changes your family is going through right now, but it is possible. Creating a parenting plan that will give your children, and you, a brighter future is something that you both can be proud of. First, however, you need to find a way to keep discipline relatively the same in both households. Perhaps the following could help you figure it out:

  • Recognize the differences in how you view discipline. You have to start somewhere, and if you know where each of you currently stands, you know how far you need to go.
  • Accept that you won't always agree. No two parents always agree, but the two of you can at least know that discipline will happen within a certain framework the two of you did agree on in your parenting plan.
  • Now that you know what you disagree on, find the things on which you can agree. This gives you a starting point for determining how discipline will happen as co-parents.
  • Setting out a plan that you both agree on and helped create gives you more of a stake in making it work.
  • Even though you don't have to do things exactly the same, your children need to know that you and their other parent are working together. If the kids receive a reprimand for something at one house, they will receive the same discipline at the other house.
  • You can create a set of house rules that you can share with your children together. If they know that you intend to work together and enforce the same rules, they are less likely to take advantage of either of you.
  • Even if you don't agree on something, don't express it in front of the children. They need to believe that you remain united as parents even though your marriage ended.
  • Another thing you can include in your parenting plan is a way to deal with confrontations and disagreements the two of you will more than likely have as you continue to parent your children together.

Discipline is something that many post-divorce parents argue about when co-parenting. If you work out this particular matter before it becomes an issue, you could limit the amount of potential conflict.

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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