Going through a divorce with kids can be different. And one of the differences is you have to communicate with your ex-spouse. Communication is a vital element in successful co-parenting.
Here are four communication tips to consider:
You should avoid initiating a conversation with the other parent when you aren’t calm, for example, after a long day at work. And if you become angry in the middle of a conversation, politely excuse yourself – respectfully hang up the phone or leave if it’s an in-person meeting.
This may not be possible in emergencies. It can be challenging to be relaxed when your child needs to be rushed to the hospital or is in trouble at school. But you should control your emotions as much as you can when talking to the other parent.
Agree on communication channels to use
You and the other parent should agree on the methods of communication to use. Do you want to communicate via phone, text, email, shared calendar or meet in person?
In addition, decide how to contact each other during an emergency. Email may not be the ideal channel for such a situation – a phone call may be more suitable.
Update your communication needs if need be
Chances are your current communication needs may change in the future. If you and the other parent communicate once a week, updating each other about kids’ matters, you may need to increase the frequency when your children have additional needs. Thus, you should be flexible about your communication needs and acknowledge those of the other parent.
Do not involve your partners
If you and/or your ex-spouse have new partners, you should not include them in conversations regarding your children, if possible. You should have rules about this issue.
Co-parents can achieve effective communication with practical tips. Consider getting legal help to develop a successful parenting plan.