Family time together after divorce is important

For some divorced parents, co-parenting consists largely of dropping off and picking up their kids from their ex-spouse's home. In some cases, just being able to do that amicably is a challenging task.

However, it's best when divorced parents can make it a point to continue to parent together whenever possible. By being together for events like games, recitals and birthdays, you help your children build memories of all of you continuing to be a family even though you no longer live together. Further, if you can learn to be together for events like school plays, when larger ones like graduations and weddings come along, they won't be so stressful.

These times when you're together don't need to be extended periods. Perhaps at the end of a visit with the other parent, you can all go out for a meal or just some ice cream together. Maybe you can spend part of Thanksgiving or Christmas together.

Even if these times together are challenging for you and your spouse, it's important to remember that they likely mean a lot to your kids and will help them maintain a sense of stability. Even if your parenting styles are different, you can use these times together to reinforce the values you share and the goals you have for your kids.

Of course, if you and your ex simply aren't able to spend time together amicably, it's probably best for your kids if you don't do something that will ultimately create more tension and discord. However, you can still find ways to be supportive of your kids' time with their other parent and show an interest in their activities together.

If you're having difficulty co-parenting with your ex, your family law attorney can likely recommend resources in your area, including support groups and counselors, that can provide help and advice.

Source: Our Family Wizard, "How to Scope Out Opportunities to Parent Together," March 09, 2017

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