Going through divorce is a tough time not only for parents but also for children. Children are more affected by divorce, for them their family is ripping apart; they will never be able to live with both mommy and daddy at the same time, at the same place. On the other hand, parents themselves are going through difficult time; they are defensive, emotionally hurt, tired and angry.
Being a good co-parent can be very difficult and equally important. You never wanted your child to go through this in the first place, but then you didn’t have any choice left. Even with so much going on, stability in your kids’ life is very important after the divorce. You might be thinking you’re one of the few parents who go through this, but no, that’s not true. Even the celebrity parents are opting co-parenting.
Recently, Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner also announced that they will be co-parenting their children. It’s a sensible approach because your differences should not affect your kids’ lives.
So how can you be a good co-parent, even if you’re not always around? Many divorced parents use parental control for smartphones, to contribute their share in parenting effectively and to be always there for your child. Effective co-parenting for some people is an on-going process, for many it is like a new skill they have to learn and master.
So, here are a few ways to be an effective co-parent:
Talk to your kids about it
Your child probably has a lot of questions about the divorce and why it happened as it can probably scar their emotions for life.
Sit them down and talk to them, tell them that you love their mom/dad but sometimes grownups are in situations where they cannot stay together. Let them know that this changes nothing and both of you will always be there for them, they need to be assured that you are not going anywhere.
Consistency should be your aim
It’s healthy to expose children to different viewpoints and to learn to be flexible, but they also need to know that they have to follow same basic set of rules and regulations at both homes. There is no hard and fast rule for this, but if the rules and regulation vary a lot, children can be confused between two different environments, what to follow and what no to follow at which house?
First talk to the other parent and establish a set of rules for both houses, for instance, you don’t want your teen to indulge in underage drinking or you don’t want them to hurt themselves etc.
So, apart from talking to your teen, keep an eye on them, too. And for this you can use parental control apps like, FamilyTime. This app is compatible with all iOS, Fire OS and Android devices and is available for free in iTunes and Android.
FamilyTime, along with many other features, allows you too:
- Keep track of your child’s whereabouts, along with date and time stamps.
- Geo-fence particular address i.e a bar, casinos, etc. and get alerts every time they enter or exit the place.
- Have a look at their call logs and contacts to see who they hang around with.
- Check their web-history to see all the web-sites they have visited.
- See the apps installed in their phones and check for any inappropriate content, Blacklist the undesirable apps.
Don’t compromise on your child’s education
No matter what the situation is, you should never compromise on your child’s education as it will affect their future greatly. Whether they are at your house or the co-parents’ make sure they follow their study timetable and monitor them.
If you feel that they get distracted easily during the study time, use parental control for smartphones to lock their phone during study hours. FamilyTime provides you with this feature; it can also be used in case of phone theft to safeguard their private data.
Show your kids you’re still a team!
You need to assure your teens that you’re still a team when it comes to raising children. Try not to question your children about the other parent and don’t make your children the messengers. If you have questions about what goes on at the other parent’s home, ask them directly. Don’t encourage or support your children to complain about the other parent. If there is a problem, push your kids to talk to the other parent, as a sign of trust.
Co-parenting: A learning process
Though co-parenting sounds difficult but it is not that tough. You just have to make time for your children and adjust to the new routine for their well-being. In the end, your love and care is what counts for your children. Stay strong and love your children unconditionally. Best of luck with your co-parenting!