One of the most difficult aspects of getting a divorce is figuring out custody and visitation. In an ideal situation, you and your ex will co-parent in some capacity. Custody may not be 50/50, but having both parents actively involved with children is what the courts prefer. Research shows that co-parenting is ideal for children, as long as there are no abuse or substance problems with either parent.
Still, you may be hesitant about the idea of co-parenting. There are plenty of misconceptions about this type of dynamic. Here are some common myths about co-parenting you should stop believing.
Myth #1: I need to be best friends with my ex
You do not need to try to be best friends with the other parent. In fact, this may be impossible, seeing as you are ending your marriage. All you need to do to be an effective co-parent is be respectful, communicative and decent. Yes, reaching a point where you can be friendly to one another is great, but do not assume you have to to hang out with your ex a lot. Keeping the dialogue business-like and professional is a great way to approach this relationship.
Myth #2: It is too hard for the kids to switch between homes
A lot of people assume that drop-offs and visitation times are stressful and disruptive experiences for children. While it may take some adjusting, the opposite is true as long as both parents are positive and supportive. Kids are better off when they get to spend time and develop close connections with both parents.
Myth #3: Agreeing about household rules and routines is impossible
You may find it hard to believe you can manage routines across two households. But if you are determined to do what is best for your kids, you can work together with your ex to be consistent. Mealtime, chores, school projects and bedtime should be relatively the same with both parents.