This is where we wrap it up, folks. Having discussed several different ways that parents can build positive and healthy co-parenting relationships after divorce, we are going to look at the last item on our list. But just because it’s last in the order of presentation, doesn’t mean it’s any less important.
Creating A Good Support Network
A support network is important for just about any important endeavor in life. From starting a business to dealing with a parent’s failing health, people need other people to help them through the dark times. Divorce is no different, and nor is parenting one’s children. So if you are planning on working towards having a positive and healthy co-parenting relationship after you get divorced, you are going to need your friends and family that have your back.
Dealing with your ex is probably going to be stressful. Most divorced couples have years of resentment, animosity, and heartbreak to wade through every time they have a conversation with each other, even if the topic has nothing to do with them personally. So trying to come to terms with your ex on parenting issues is likely going to come with a number of challenges.
Because mental health professionals recommend that you don’t express your frustrations with your ex to your children, you are going to need someone to talk to in the event that you become extremely frustrated with your ex. Someone who will listen, and empathise with your pain, and comfort you. Someone who can give you sound advice, and be there for you when you are angry enough to throw things, or sad enough to cry.
But while it sounds like the supportive group of loved ones is only benefiting you, if you think about it for a moment, you will realize that it really isn’t – everyone wins in this case. A good support network does double duty, so to speak. By being there for you, they provide you with a healthy way to vent your frustrations so that they don’t spill over onto your children. This in turn means that your children don’t suffer the effects of your grief and anger when your former spouse does something that infuriates you.
In addition, by allowing you a safe space where you can get things off your chest, a good support network helps you to keep your unnecessary confrontations with your ex to a minimum. Yelling at your ex may feel good in the moment, but it only makes the tension between you two even worse, which will directly impact the co-parenting relationship you share. This has a direct impact on how well you are able to negotiate custody and other changes in the future, and on your children’s lives.
So be sure to surround yourself with supportive and loving friends and family members when you are going through a divorce. Join a support group, plan a weekly coffee date with a group of close friends, or find an online forum for others in a similar situation. Having someone to talk to when you are struggling will make all the difference.
We hope this series has been helpful for you, and that you are able to use some of this advice to create a more positive co-parenting experience. Believe it or not, it’s worth it, because your children will be your children for the rest of your life, so investing in parenting them in a healthy way will positively impact your entire future, and theirs.