Peaceful and Effective Co-Parenting
Relationships are tough. Sometimes we find a partner who is completely on the same level and the relationship flourishes. You have similar communication styles and similar standards or expectations for how a household should run. You argue peacefully and respect each other’s thoughts or opinions. This is awesome when it happens but unfortunately this is not usually the case.
One of the most amazing things about humanity is the vast array of individual differences. We have different personalities, different communication styles, and different upbringings or needs. Our individuality can make a relationship exciting and fun but can also make it extremely difficult when we experience a challenge or upset. But we’re adaptive. We learn and we change. If you and a partner are so different that you can’t do this, you can move on and find someone that will.
This is an easy fix when you don’t have children but can be extremely difficult once one or more children are in the mix. In order to provide a healthy environment for your children, you’re going to have to learn ways to communicate. You may not always agree with one another but you’re going to have to work together and get on the same page (regardless of whether you are together or separated). This article is designed to help parents co-parent in a peaceful and effective way. Keep reading for tips on how to make this happen!
Communication is key
Take time to communicate with each other. Talk about important topics like discipline strategies and rewards. Let each other know what values are important for you to instill in your child. Make sure you are communicating about the behaviors of your children on a regular basis (especially if you are separated). Set aside time at least once a week to check-in on how things are going with your child. Talk about challenges. Talk about successes. Just talk.
Make rules together
Get together and develop a set of rules for the household. If you are co-parenting from different households, you should try and make house rules that are similar across the board. This will help ease your child’s transitions between visits. You’re not always going to agree and that’s totally okay but remember that a lot of times we have to make sacrifices for the betterment of our children.
Your children are always watching. And if they’re not watching, they’re listening. Be aware of how you talk to one another. If you don’t agree with something, talk it out when your children are occupied. It’s okay to argue in front of your children as long as you’re respectful. This teaches your child that they can disagree with someone and models conflict resolution skills. Whatever you do, don’t get hateful. Try not to scream or use hurtful words in front of your child – even if they’re in a different room or you think they’re asleep. Children are great imitators – give them something great to imitate.
Be a united front
Make it a priority to back each other up. If one parent says “no” to something, don’t go behind his or her back and let your child do it anyways. As soon as one parent lays down a law, don’t undermine them by questioning their authority (unless that parent is WAY off base). If you don’t entirely agree with a rule your co-parent is trying to enforce, pull them aside and talk about it in private. This is less likely to happen if you are actively communicating with the other parent.
Are you having trouble co-parenting? Parenting coaching is a great way to get on the same page! Check out Parent Coaching Services with Leanne Pilgrim to find out more information. Click here to schedule your FREE consultation!