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Tips for handling conflicts with a co-parent

Trying to work through everything that comes with having children around during a divorce isn't easy. For some adults, the ability to put their own feelings aside and truly focus on the children brings up an interesting arrangement. These parents might opt to co-parent, which means that they continue to work as a team to raise the children.

If you have a co-parenting relationship, you should realize that there is a good chance that you and your ex will have spats at some point. It is highly unlikely that you will be able to make it through your child's entire life without disagreements. During those times, you might need to refocus on the children.

Take some time

You might need to walk away from the issue for a bit. This gives you and your ex time to calm down. Make sure that when you walk away, you have let your ex know why. Using a business-like tone might help since it will sound neutral and not like you are trying to stoke the fire. When you are away from the situation, you can sit down and think about how the different solutions and outcomes might impact your children. Remember that your focus should always remain on the children. Never let that focus shift to the adults.

Listen and learn

There are often more solutions to an issue than what one person could think about. With this is mind, you should be willing to listen to what your ex has to say about the matter. Learn about what his or her thought process is for the solution offered. By thinking outside of the box, you might be able to come up with a resolution that you and your ex can live with and that is in the best interests of your children.

Move to parallel parenting

Parallel parenting is a more traditional form of parenting. Instead of working as a cohesive team, you and your ex each do your own thing with parenting. If co-parenting isn't working right now, you might move to this model of parenting. You can always go back to co-parenting later if both adults can come to agreements about the matters that led to the division of parents in the first place.

It is unlikely that you are going to be able to avoid having to make changes to the child custody agreement. When the time comes to make those changes, you might need to consider a formal modification petition.

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