The issues between two former spouses can last long after their divorce is final. In some cases, the feelings and difficulties that remain can begin to affect how the two spouses interact with their children, eventually affecting a co-parenting relationship. There are certain actions that parents will want to be intentional to avoid in order to avoid disruption to a custody and visitation plan. When there is a disruption, it may eventually begin to affect the mental and emotional well-being of the children.
Co-parenting can be difficult for two Texas parents, but it may help to remember that keeping the well-being of the children first should always be the priority. With the focus on what is best for the youngest members of the family, it will be easier to avoid issues that could result in long-term harm to the parent-child relationship. If you are struggling with your co-parenting relationship, it may help to be aware of the most common actions that can cause difficulty and disruption.
Behaviors to avoid
A successful co-parenting relationship requires both parents to work cooperatively with each other. While this does not mean the parents must like each other to make this type of arrangement work, both parties must adhere to the terms of the custody and visitation plan for the benefit of the children. It is best to avoid the following behaviors in order to prevent disruption to a co-parenting plan:
- Talking negatively about the other parent in front of the kids
- Asking the children to choose sides or making them feel they must do so
- Keeping the children from seeing or communicating with the other parent
- Refusing to provide consistency and maintain the terms of the custody order
- Asking the child to spy on the other parent or report on that parent’s actions
There is significant evidence that children do better when allowed to maintain a strong relationship with both parents after a divorce. A co-parenting arrangement is often the most practical and reasonable way to do this, but it will require a commitment to reasonable and respectful behavior in order to co-parent well. The foundation of any strong and sustainable co-parenting arrangement is carefully crafted, and a custody plan should be centered around the needs of the children and their long-term interests.