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Co-parenting for parents who don't get along

When two parents go through a divorce, it is often most difficult on the youngest members of the family. Children can experience emotional duress and mental stress when their parents separate, and it's wise for you to consider ways that you can make this time easier for your kids. One way many North Dakota families do this is by co-parenting.

Co-parenting is not easy, and you may assume that this won't work for you because you and the other parent don't get along. Fortunately, there are ways that you can make this type of custody arrangement work well, regardless of how you feel about your ex. An important factor in your success is to know what to expect from co-parenting and to remain committed to the best interests of your children above everything else. 

What will co-parenting require of you? 

One thing to note is that co-parenting may be what's best for your kids, not necessarily what's easiest for you. This specific type of custody arrangement requires that parents share time, responsibilities and decision-making authority. The benefit of this plan is that it allows children to have access to both parents after their divorce, and they will feel that both parents remain involved in their lives. 

If you do not like your ex-spouse, you are not alone. Many divorced couples are not amicable, but they choose to parent together because it's what's best for the kids. Some of the following tips can make it easier for you to cooperate and work with the other parent, which in turn makes things easier for your kids: 

  • Parents should remain open to communicating with each other, discussing plans and keeping each other informed about things.
  • Parents should have clear boundaries for the kids that apply at both homes, making it easier to deal with discipline and expectations for kids.
  • Parents should remain flexible, as this will make things less stressful for themselves and their kids.
  • Parents should commit to avoiding any type of negative talk about each other while they are around the children. 

These are only a few ways that parents who don't see eye to eye can make co-parenting work smoothly. If you are going through a divorce and want to provide security for your kids long-term, you may consider this specific option. Before you agree to custody terms or make any important decisions, you may want to discuss this choice with an experienced family law attorney who can help you pursue the right plan for your unique family.

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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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