Maintaining communication with a former spouse can be a challenging aspect of co-parenting after a divorce. Some parents try to lessen this burden by shifting it to others: the children. In fact, this strategy can be damaging and even more burdensome for children as they have to take on the role of mediator between parents.
Instead of putting children in this difficult position, utilize other resources to keep an open, civil dialogue with your co-parent. Children need to be involved in discussions about their lives and schedules, but they should not serve as messengers between former spouses who want to avoid communication.
Avoid putting children in the middle
A child of divorce tends to struggle with adapting to the new lifestyle of two separate parents and independent households. Their struggles are burdensome enough without placing the additional responsibility of maintaining communication between what seems to be two opposing sides.
As a parent, you have to make the choice of putting your child’s needs above yours, particularly during a tumultuous time such as separation and divorce. This may mean finding ways to cope with communicating with an ex that don't involve using a child as a go-between.
Tools for co-parent communication
For those co-parents who find communication to be a challenge, consider some possible resources that don’t involve a child mediator. In the current digital age, there is an app or website for essentially every want or need a person could have. The same is true for co-parenting.
Many apps and websites for co-parents offer similar features to streamline the shared responsibilities and help former spouses stay focused on the task at hand. These features vary slightly depending on the service, but often include:
- In-app messaging systems
- Expense reports to track purchases
- Shared calendars for the whole family
- Appointment and event reminders
- Secure storage of child’s important information such as medical and education records
These digital resources help many co-parents manage shared responsibilities without the tension and potential divisiveness of other platforms. Email and text threads can get long and confusing, allowing important information to slip through the cracks. An all-in-one platform such as Our Family Wizard of 2Houses keeps all the pertinent information in one place to eliminate miscommunication and outside tensions.
Co-parenting after a divorce can be a challenge for many former spouses. No parent wants to place additional burdens on their children during a co-parenting arrangement, so consider some of the tools at your disposal to simplify your shared parenting responsibilities.