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Co-Parenting and Joint Custody Tips for Divorced Parents

Co-parenting after a separation or divorce is hardly ever easy. These shared custody suggestions can assist give your children the stability, security, and close relationships with both parents that they require.

co parenting

What is co-parenting?

Unless your family has faced serious issues such as domestic violence or substance abuse, co-parenting– having both moms and dads play an active function in their kids’s daily lives– is the best way to make sure that all your kids’ needs are met and allow them to keep close relationships with both parents. The quality of the relationship between co-parents can likewise have a strong influence on the psychological and mental well-being of children, and the occurrence of anxiety and depression. Of course, putting aside relationship problems, specifically after an acrimonious split, to co-parent agreeably is often simpler said than done.

Joint custody plans can be tiring, infuriating, and laden with stress, particularly if you have a controversial relationship with your ex-partner. You may feel worried about your ex’s parenting capabilities, stressed about kid assistance or other monetary problems, feel worn down by dispute, or think you’ll never have the ability to get rid of all the animosities in your relationship.

Making shared decisions, communicating with each other at drop-offs, or simply speaking with a person you ‘d rather forget everything about can look like impossible tasks. For the sake of your kids’ wellness, however, it is possible for you to get rid of co-parenting difficulties and establish a cordial working relationship with your ex. With these suggestions, you can remain calm, stay consistent, and resolve disputes to make joint custody work and allow your kids to flourish.

Making co-parenting work

The secret to effective co-parenting is to separate the individual relationship with your ex from the co-parenting relationship. It might be useful to begin considering your relationship with your ex as a completely brand-new one– one that is completely about the well-being of your children, and not about either of you.

[Read: Children and Divorce]
Your marriage might be over, but your family is not; acting in your kids’ benefit is your essential priority. The primary step to being a mature, responsible co-parent is to always put your children’s needs ahead of your own.

Advantages for your children

Through your co-parenting partnership, your kids need to recognize that they are more crucial than the conflict that ended your marital relationship– and comprehend that your love for them will prevail despite altering scenarios. Kids whose divorced moms and dads have a cooperative relationship:

  • Feel safe. When positive of the love of both parents, kids change faster and easily to divorce and new living situations, and have much better self-confidence.
  • Take advantage of consistency. Co-parenting fosters similar guidelines, discipline, and benefits between homes, so kids understand what to anticipate, and what’s anticipated of them.
  • Better understand problem fixing. Kids who see their parents continuing to collaborate are most likely to find out how to effectively and peacefully fix issues themselves.
  • Have a healthy example to follow. By cooperating with the other parent, you are establishing a life pattern your children can carry into the future to construct and keep stronger relationships.
  • Are psychologically and mentally much healthier. Children exposed to dispute between co-parents are most likely to establish problems such as anxiety, stress and anxiety, or ADHD.

Co-parenting pointer 1: Set hurt and anger aside

Effective co-parenting means that your own emotions– any hurt, resentment, or anger– must take a back seat to the requirements of your kids. Undoubtedly, setting aside such strong feelings might be the hardest part of learning to work cooperatively with your ex, however it’s likewise possibly the most vital.

Co-parenting is not about your feelings, or those of your ex-spouse, however rather about your child’s joy, stability, and future wellness.

Separating feelings from behavior


It’s okay to be injured and upset, however your feelings don’t have to determine your habits. Rather, let what’s finest for your kids– you working cooperatively with the other parent– encourage your actions.

Never ever vent to your child. Buddies, therapists, or even a caring family pet can all make good listeners when you need to get negative sensations off your chest.

Stay kid-focused. If you feel upset or resentful, attempt to bear in mind why you require to act with function and grace: your kid’s benefits are at stake. If your anger feels overwhelming, looking at a picture of your kid may help you calm down.

Do not put your children in the middle

You might never ever totally lose all of your resentment or bitterness about your break up, but what you can do is separate those feelings and advise yourself that they are your issues, not your kid’s. Deal with to keep your problems with your ex far from your children.

Never ever utilize kids as messengers. When you utilize your kids to communicate messages to your co-parent, it puts them in the center of your dispute. The objective is to keep your kid out of your relationship concerns, so call or email your ex directly.

Keep your problems to yourself. Never state unfavorable features of your ex to your kids, or make them seem like they have to choose. Your child has a right to a relationship with their other parent that is free of your impact.

Tip 2: Improve interaction with your co-parent

Serene, consistent, and purposeful communication with your ex is essential to the success of co-parenting– although it may seem definitely impossible. All of it starts with your mindset. Think about interaction with your ex as having the highest purpose: your kid’s wellness. Prior to having contact with your ex, ask yourself how your actions will affect your child, and fix to conduct yourself with self-respect. Make your child the centerpiece of every discussion you have with your ex-partner.

Bear in mind that it isn’t always required to meet your ex in person– speaking over the phone or exchanging emails or texts is great for the majority of conversations. The objective is to develop conflict-free interaction, so see which type of contact works best for you.

Co-parenting interaction approaches


You select to have contact, the following approaches can assist you start and preserve efficient communication:

Approach the relationship with your ex as a business collaboration where your “organization” is your kids’s wellness. Write or speak to your ex as you would a coworker– with regard, cordiality, and neutrality.

Make requests. Instead of making statements, which can be misinterpreted as needs, try framing as much as you can as a demand. Demands can start with, “Would you be willing to …?” or “Can we attempt …?”.

Even if you end up disagreeing with the other parent, you must at least be able to communicate to your ex that you’ve understood their point of view. And listening does not symbolize approval, so you will not lose anything by allowing your ex to voice his or her viewpoints.

Program restraint. Keep in mind that communicating with one another is going to be necessary for the length of your kids’s entire childhood– if not longer. You can train yourself to not overreact to your ex, and gradually you can become numb to the buttons they try to press.

Dedicate to meeting/talking consistently. Though it might be incredibly difficult in the early stages, frequent interaction with your ex will convey the message to your kids that you and your co-parent are a joined front.

Keep discussions kid-focused. Never let a discussion with your ex-partner digress into a conversation about your needs or their needs; it ought to always have to do with your kid’s needs only.

Rapidly eliminate tension in the moment. It may seem difficult to remain calm when dealing with a difficult ex-spouse who’s harmed you in the past or has a real knack for pressing your buttons. However by practicing fast tension relief techniques, you can learn to stay in control when the pressure develops.

Improving the relationship with your ex.


If you’re really prepared to rebuild trust after a separate, be genuine about your efforts. Remember your children’s best interests as you progress to improve your relationship.

  • Ask your ex’s viewpoint. This easy strategy can jump-start favorable communications between you. Take a concern that you don’t feel highly about, and ask for your ex’s input, showing that you value their opinion.
  • Say sorry. When you’re sorry about something, apologize genuinely– even if the occurrence took place a very long time back. Asking forgiveness can be a really effective step in moving your relationship past that of adversaries.
  • If a special getaway with your ex is going to cut into your time with your kid by an hour, graciously let it be. Keep in mind that it’s all about what is finest for your kid.

Tip 3: Co-parent as a group.

Parenting has plenty of choices you’ll have to make with your ex, whether you like each other or not. Complying and interacting without blow-ups or bickering makes decision-making far much easier on everybody. The information of child-rearing choices tend to fall into location if you shoot for consistency, geniality, and teamwork with your co-parent.

Aim for co-parenting consistency.


It’s healthy for children to be exposed to various perspectives and discover to be flexible, but they likewise need to understand they’re living under the exact same basic set of expectations at each home. Aiming for consistency in between your home and your ex’s avoids confusion for your children.

Rules. Rules don’t have to be exactly the exact same in between 2 households, but if you and your ex-spouse develop usually constant standards, your kids won’t have to recuperate and forth between 2 drastically various disciplinary environments. Essential way of life rules like homework issues, curfews, and off-limit activities need to be followed in both homes.

Discipline. Try to follow comparable systems of consequences for broken guidelines, even if the offense didn’t happen under your roof. So, if your kids have actually lost TV benefits while at your ex’s house, follow through with the restriction. The exact same can be provided for rewarding good behavior.

Arrange. Where you can, go for some consistency in your kids’s schedules. Making meals, homework, and bedtimes comparable can go a long way toward your child’s modification to having two homes.

Making crucial decisions as co-parents.


Major decisions require to be made by both you and your ex. Being open, honest, and uncomplicated about crucial concerns is vital to both your relationship with your ex and your children’s wellness.

Medical requires. Whether you decide to designate one parent to interact mostly with health care experts or participate in medical visits together, keep one another in the loop.

Education. Make sure to let the school understand about modifications in your child’s living situation. Talk to your ex ahead of time about class schedules, extra-curricular activities, and parent-teacher conferences, and be courteous to each other at school or sports events.

Financial problems. The cost of preserving 2 separate families can strain your attempts to be effective co-parents. Set a sensible budget plan and keep precise records for shared expenses. If your ex offers opportunities for your children that you can not provide, be gracious.

Solving co-parenting disputes.


As you co-parent, you and your ex are bound to disagree over particular issues. Keep the following in mind as you attempt to reach a consensus.

Regard can go a long way. Simple good manners need to be the structure for co-parenting. Being considerate and considerate consists of letting your ex understand about school occasions, being flexible about your schedule when possible, and taking their viewpoint seriously.

If you disagree about something essential, you will require to continue interacting. Never ever discuss your distinctions of viewpoints with or in front of your kid.

Don’t sweat the little stuff. If you disagree about essential concerns like a medical surgery or option of school for your kid, by all means, keep the discussion going. However if you desire your child in bed by 7:30 and your ex says 8:00, let it go and conserve your energy for the larger problems.

Compromise. Yes, you will need to come around to your ex-spouse’s point of view as frequently as they come around to yours. It might not always be your first choice, but compromise permits you both to “win” and makes both of you most likely to be versatile in the future.

Idea 4: Make transitions and visitation much easier.

The actual relocation from one household to another, whether it happens every few days or simply specific weekends, can be a very tough time for children. Every reunion with one moms and dad is likewise a separation with the other, each “hi” also a “bye-bye.” While shifts are unavoidable, there are many things you can do to assist make them simpler on your kids.

When your child leaves.


As kids prepare to leave your house for your ex’s, attempt to remain positive and deliver them on time.

Assist children prepare for change. Advise kids they’ll be leaving for the other parent’s home a day or more prior to the go to.

Cram in advance. Depending on their age, aid children load their bags well before they leave so that they don’t forget anything they’ll miss out on. Encourage packing familiar tips like an unique stuffed toy or photograph.

Constantly drop off– never pick up the child. It’s a good idea to prevent “taking” your child from the other parent so that you don’t risk interrupting or curtailing a special moment. Drop off your kid at the other parent’s house rather.

When your kid returns.


The beginning of your child’s return to your house can be uncomfortable or even rocky. To assist your child change:.

Keep things subtle. When children first enter your home, attempt to have some down time together– check out a book or do some other quiet activity.

Double up. To make packaging easier and make kids feel more comfy when they are at the other moms and dad’s house, have kids keep specific basics– toothbrush, hairbrush, pajamas– at both houses.

Allow your child area. Children frequently require a little time to change to the transition.

Develop an unique regimen. Play a video game or serve the same special meal each time your kid returns. When they return to you it can assist the transition, kids prosper on routine– if they know precisely what to expect.

Handling visitation rejection.

It’s common that kids in joint custody often decline to leave one parent to stick with the other.

  • Discover the cause. The problem might be easy to fix, like paying more attention to your kid, making a change in discipline design, or having more toys or other entertainment. Or it may be that an emotional reason is at hand, such as conflict or misconception. Speak to your child about their refusal.
  • Go with the flow. Whether you have actually discovered the reason for the rejection or not, attempt to give your child the space and time that they certainly require.
  • Talk with your ex. A heart-to-heart with your ex about the rejection might be emotional and tough, but can assist you figure out what the problem is. Try to remain sensitive and comprehending to your ex as you discuss this touchy topic.

Authors: Jocelyn Block, M.A. and Melinda Smith, M.A.

The objective is to keep your kid out of your relationship problems, so call or email your ex straight.

Never ever state negative things about your ex to your children, or make them feel like they have to select. Approach the relationship with your ex as a company collaboration where your “organization” is your kids’s well-being. If an unique getaway with your ex is going to cut into your time with your kid by an hour, happily let it be. If you want your child in bed by 7:30 and your ex states 8:00, let it go and conserve your energy for the bigger issues.

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About Mediator in WikiPedia

Mediation is a structured, interactive process where an impartial third party assists disputing parties in resolving conflict through the use of specialized communication and negotiation techniques. All participants in mediation are encouraged to actively participate in the process. Mediation is a “party-centered” process in that it is focused primarily upon the needs, rights, and interests of the parties. The mediator uses a wide variety of techniques to guide the process in a constructive direction and to help the parties find their optimal solution. A mediator is facilitative in that she/he manages the interaction between parties and facilitates open communication. Mediation is also evaluative in that the mediator analyzes issues and relevant norms (“reality-testing”), while refraining from providing prescriptive advice to the parties (e.g., “You should do…”).

Mediation, as used in law, is a form of alternative dispute resolution resolving disputes between two or more parties with concrete effects. Typically, a third party, the mediator, assists the parties to negotiate a settlement. Disputants may mediate disputes in a variety of domains, such as commercial, legal, diplomatic, workplace, community, and family matters.

The term mediation broadly refers to any instance in which a third party helps others reach an agreement. More specifically, mediation has a structure, timetable, and dynamics that “ordinary” negotiation lacks. The process is private and confidential, possibly enforced by law. Participation is typically voluntary. The mediator acts as a neutral third party and facilitates rather than directs the process. Mediation is becoming a more peaceful and internationally accepted solution to end the conflict. Mediation can be used to resolve disputes of any magnitude.

The term mediation, however, due to language as well as national legal standards and regulations is not identical in content in all countries but rather has specific connotations, and there are some differences between Anglo-Saxon definitions and other countries, especially countries with a civil, statutory law tradition.

Mediators use various techniques to open, or improve, dialogue and empathy between disputants, aiming to help the parties reach an agreement. Much depends on the mediator’s skill and training. As the practice gained popularity, training programs, certifications, and licensing followed, which produced trained and professional mediators committed to the discipline.

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