Divorce and Co-Parenting in Arizona
There’s an old phrase that isn’t used nearly as often today as it was a few decades ago, “Don’t cry over spilled milk.” It’s an excellent saying to keep in mind when attempting to adjust from married parents to divorced co-parents. It’s a reminder of two things.
One, we all spill a little milk now and then. Two, it’s best to let the little things go. It’s also helpful to remember that if there were no conflicts between you and your ex, you’d probably still be married.
So take a second now and then to remind yourself that a lot of conflicts that seem inherent in co-parenting situations can be avoided by labeling the small things as “spilled milk” to be mopped up as best you can and put behind you. Don’t expect co-parenting to be the perfect parenting situation.
Parenting, in general, is tough. There aren’t many who would argue when we say that co-parenting is tougher. The first step to making your co-parenting a success is not to throw your hands in the air in despair every time things don’t go as you expected. Instead of getting angry when your co-parenting partner veers off the track you were sure both of you agreed to be on, have a positive attitude. Fix it or move past it.
Co-Parenting After Divorce | Tips You Should Use
Tips on Maximizing the Benefits of Co-Parenting for Your Children:
Tip #1: Accept the things you cannot change. Doing so will free up a lot of mental and emotional energy that you can spend on your children.
Tip #2: Be in the present. Constantly feeling worried and upset about what your ex is doing or not doing keeps you from being in the present with your children. When you are mindful of the current moment, your children benefit.
Tip #3: Make it a point to create a calm, emotionally stable home environment rather than worrying that your ex’s home is going to have a negative impact on your children. Constantly worrying about what you’re ex is not doing right makes it very difficult for you to create a calm, stable home your children need in order to become calm, grounded, stable adults someday.
Your divorce is over, but you have children with your ex, so your relationship with your ex cannot be over. You don’t live together anymore, but the stresses and difficulties that led you to divorce could evolve after the divorce as the co-parenting gets rolling. Prepare yourself for this fact.
It will make addressing the difficulties of co-parenting that much easier if you are ready for problems before they arise. Keeping the co-parenting waters calm and smooth is the best way to maximize the benefits for your children.
Effective Co-Parenting | 5 Tips and Strategies
If you are part of a blended family, you know that being a stepparent can be difficult. You also know that effective co-parenting in Arizona can bring stress down for everyone involved. It can also be gratifying, but it takes a concentrated effort. If you aren’t sure where to start, consider these tips from veteran step-parents who managed to not only survive but to create a place the whole blended family felt comfortable calling home.
5 Tips on Surviving Step-Parenthood:
Effective co-parenting in Arizona requires you to be patient. Don’t expect your stepchild to fall in love with you immediately. They may even tell you that they hate you. Give them time to adjust.
Give them space. Your stepchild will need time to adjust, but they’ll also need space. Make sure that your stepchild has a place when they are at your house. If possible, give each of them their space just like they have at their “other” home.
Make sure you and your spouse are in it together. There’s nothing that will stop your efforts to make things work more quickly than not being on the same page with your spouse. Know what types of discipline you both agree to use. Discuss bedtimes and manners to be used in the home, etc.
Make new traditions. When it comes to effective co-parenting in a blended family and creating a home for your stepchildren, there’s a lot of change. But no rule requires that all the changes be negative. Make some new traditions.
Use the time you have together as a family to make your traditions. They’ll be changes, but they’ll be positive and fun and possibly definitive for your new family.
Never forget. You are not their mom or dad. Your stepchildren live in your home; it’s their home, too. You married their mom or dad, but you are not their mom or dad. You are busting in on what they thought was their entire family.
They don’t want a replacement for what they already have. Give them the breathing room to get comfortable with your presence first. Then do your best to get to know them better; learn about their interests. You don’t need to be their mom or dad. You can be a friend, a role model, a peacekeeper, etc. Just don’t try to replace mom or dad and you’ll eventually find your place in an effective co-parenting role.
If you have questions about co-parenting after divorce in Arizona, you should seriously consider contacting the attorneys at Hildebrand Law, PC. Our Arizona child custody and family law attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience successfully representing clients in child custody and family law cases.
Our family law firm has earned numerous awards such as US News and World Reports Best Arizona Family Law Firm, US News and World Report Best Divorce Attorneys, “Best of the Valley” by Arizona Foothills readers, and “Best Arizona Divorce Law Firms” by North Scottsdale Magazine.
Call us today at (480)305-8300 or reach out to us through our appointment scheduling form to schedule your personalized consultation and turn your child custody or family law case around today.
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About the Author: Chris Hildebrand has over 26 years of Arizona family law experience and received awards from US News and World Report, Phoenix Magazine, Arizona Foothills Magazine and others. Visit https://www.hildebrandlaw.com.
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