“Showing the child through words and actions that the other parent matters in their life is one of the greatest
- Don’t share any anger at your ex (co-parent) with your child.
- Never badmouth, demean, denigrate, or devalue your co-parent in front of your child. EVER.
- Communicate directly with your co-parent (your child is not a messenger!)
- Respect your co-parent’s parenting time. Don’t do anything to impede or inhibit it from happening. Don’t allow your child to avoid it, even if he/she is hesitant. Don’t bombard your child with calls or texts during the other parent’s time.
- Say positive things about your co-parent in front of your child (“I see you have your Mom’s good organization skills”)
- Never discuss what is happening with court or lawyers with or in front of your child. This is not information they need to be burdened with.\
- Encourage your child to do kind gestures (a small gift, Father’s day card, postcard, etc.) for their other parent.
- Encourage your child to communicate –telephone, email, texting, etc. with their other parent during your parenting time.
- Get your child excited about seeing their other parent as the transition time approaches. Kids will follow their parents emotional lead.
- Include your co-parent in sharing information and making decisions about your child.
Divorce does not have to damage children. But it always does when divorced parents have a negative attitude about the other. Arguing, playing emotional games, trying to make the child take sides are all examples of this. Parents need to elevate their behaviors by refusing to engage in any emotional or tactical behaviors that harm their child.