I've given up imagining that my words or actions can change her in any way. We'd like to think we can make another person happy, or comfortable, or secure. Unfortunately, we cannot.
Co-parenting is the process of becoming a partner with the other parent of your children. It begins the minute you discuss having children. The co-parenting agreement should span a lifetime, including what happens in the case of divorce. Start at 50/50 shared parenting? Agree to 50/50 shared parenting in divorce. Become great co-parents. Equals. Allies. Focused on your children and how you can support each other in the difficult journey ahead.
- A Healthy Co-Parenting Plan: Hope for the Recently Divorced Parent
- Present Tense: Co-Parenting Disconnected
- I Am Not the Problem in the Co-parenting Relationship, We Are
- Would You Damage Your Co-Parent’s Livelihood If You Could?
- Understanding My Co-parent’s Malfunction: My Easy Indifference
- I Wish You Well, and Absolutely Nothing Else: Re-forgiving a Co-parent
- Becoming a Healthier Co-parent by Releasing Your Ex
- What Went Down: Divorce is Not Kind. Co-parenting is a Myth.
- Co-parenting Struggles: Withholding the Joy of Your Kids
Even if your ex decides not to co-parent collaboratively with you, they are co-parenting, but in a negative way. You want what’s best for your children. You want a good co-parenting relationship. You want your kids to love you both. Weaponizing co-parenting is a toxic move. Stay positive. If you can’t co-parent nicely, then co-parent without negative inputs.
It only takes ONE PARENT to hold a positive post-divorce relationship. The enlightened parent can lessen the conflict at every stage of co-parenting. When I learned that positive only was the track I was on with my ex-wife, my co-parenting success was no longer tied to her poor behavior.
In my future, I have my ex-wife to thank for the hardship of used car loan rates in excess of 19%. And she could care less. She claims to be all compassionate and always interested in protecting the kids' interests. But suing your co-parent is not protecting anyone's interest.
I can be present, I can be honest, and I can be vulnerable with them. Today I saw the joy and blessing of a little girl with her mom and dad. I saw myself 10 and 15 years ago. And I woke up.
Another year begins. My daughter is on to Volleyball, Basketball and Track/Tennis. And we're all back to our 70/30 routine. And I've got nothing to complain about and plenty to be grateful for.
And so, I've been girlfriend free since the end of the summer and it's fine. I'd rather not be. But I'd rather be alone that coping with another person's major emotional distress. I don't need drama or high theater.
It's all new territory for me and most of us out there dating again after divorce. And I'm okay with that. We're all just trying to figure it out. It's a process. Onward we go with good illumination and perhaps a glass of wine.
You can't control the other parent. But you can choose your response. If you can diffuse the urgency and your need to be right, smart, witty, or even a jerk, you will go along way towards lessening the drama and making things easier for both you and your kids.
What is an evening with your kids worth? Is there an amount of money or time spent elsewhere that I wouldn't give to have more time with my kids?