Modern family structures and patterns of marriage and remarriage have created new, complex family structures and extended family structures and have given rise to concepts such as Shared Parenting.
Shared parenting refers to a collaborative arrangement in child custody or divorce determinations in which the care of the children is equal or more than substantially shared between the biological parents.
Shared parenting can be healthy for children and is viewed as encouraging children to know both parents are actively involved and share responsibility in their upbringing.
However it is difficult to make this work and often it can mean stress from all involved including the child if is done the wrong way.
Minimize Conflict: Whether a divorce was acrimonious or not; whoever was at fault; these are things that ought to be relegated to the past in the best interest of children.
Conflict cannot be eliminated, but it can be minimized, and ideally it should not be on display for the children to see. Undermining or belittling the other parent is corrosive for a child who needs to value and esteem each of their parents.
Understand that it is a child to have a meaningful relationship with the other biological parent; it helps not to have negative feedback about him or her.
Communicate: If shared parenting that you have undertaken, do not take it lightly. Be prepared to invent time and effort in it, and that includes communication with the other parent.
Resentment or bitterness may be inevitable in many cases, but parents could try to make it work for the child by trying to be civil. Limit the communication to that relating to the child or children but keep the channels of communication open.
Create a Clear Schedule: It can of course be very challenging to make a schedule that does not end up being chaotic and confusing. However spend some time chalking out the most sensible and clear schedule including attending special events.
Drop off and pick up locations and times should be clearly set out. Organization is the key in these situations, which may take some adjustments now, but will do a lot to streamline things in the long run.
Enjoy: And lastly don’t forget to enjoy the time that you have with your child. Engage in fun and bonding activities, make the time count.
Don’t let extraneous considerations spoil the time that you have with your child; instead try to create time that can be relished by both you and your child and which will make for a happier, more balanced child.