Conflict is inevitable in any relationship. However, as co-parents, you should do your best to avoid unnecessary arguments and unpleasantness for the benefit of your children. For divorced co-parents, reducing conflict might seem like a particularly tall order, but if you maintain the focus on your children and set aside your personal feelings, you bypass some of the most common obstacles. Nothing can undo the past and, at this point, your children’s best interests are what matters most.
Strategies for Working with Your Co-Parent
Ultimately, if you wish to have a more functional co-parenting relationship, you must learn to set aside your personal feelings about one another and put your children’s needs first. If you have unresolved issues that you are having trouble coping with or moving past, consider therapy or counseling to work through it. Otherwise, these issues might hinder your ability to cooperate with your co-parent.
You should also keep in mind that co-parenting is a two-person job, so do not drag your children to it by using them as messengers. Dealing with the changes your family underwent is undoubtedly difficult enough for them and having them relay messages to your co-parent will add to their stress levels and likely result in a confusing game of telephone.
Continue reading for more tips on how to reduce conflict with your co-parent:
- Make clarifications instead of assumptions: Former spouses sometimes assume the worst about one another’s intentions, especially if there is a lot of bad blood. Instead of assuming anything, offer or ask for clarification. Getting the facts straight from the get-go will reduce conflicts and help you work on your communication skills.
- Think things through: When dealing with important matters, give yourself a chance to think things through instead of acting or reacting impulsively. When you think things through, you will also be better equipped to explain the reasoning behind your choices to your co-parent.
- Watch your tone: In some cases, the problem is not the words we say, but rather how we say it. When speaking to your former spouse, try to be more aware of your tone. Depending on the medium you use to communicate, the words and phrases you use might come off as combative or pert.
- Co-parenting is not about winning: Although it feels good to come out on top, the fact is that if your sights are set on winning, it means your children’s best interests are coming in second. Arguments with your co-parent should be about your children’s needs and not about winning, even if you believe you are in the right when it comes to your parenting choices. Be a good listener and focus your attention on problem-solving as a co-parenting team.
It might not be easy to overcome conflicts, especially so soon after the finalization of your divorce, but with practice and an honest effort, you can achieve success.
Contact Our Skilled Family Law Attorney Today!
Although it is best to work together as co-parents and achieve a resolution without using the court as a constant referee, many family law matters require legal assistance before they can be put to rest. At Beatriz Zyne, P.A., our attorney will provide the advice and guidance you need to get through this difficult situation.
Contact our law office today at (305) 876-6138 to schedule a consultation.