Always treat your co-parent with respect and compassion. A metaphor for co-parenting might be, "Treat them as well as you do a convenience store clerk." You want to get in and get out with as little hassle as possible.
I'm a single dad who wants as close a relationship as I can have with my two kids. They've got their own agendas, their own friends, and their own problems. I'm simply here to offer my companionship and support.
As my kids grow older more of the divorce and reasons for the divorce will become clear to them. Life is long. Parenting is forever. Love will win out over anger.
For the last years of his life, my buddy will do whatever he does as an old dog. I will watch him zigzagging around the back yard and try to remain happy for him rather than sad for him. I will love on him as much as I can. And I'll be aware of how my emotional attachments and complaints are mine alone. He's a dog.
SEX: YES with protection; DRUGS: IF YOU WANT, when you're old enough: ROCKNROLL: MUSIC is good, you decide the genre.
Yes, divorce is hard. Trying to whitewash every single detail of a co-parenting relationship in some fantasy land haze would be of benefit to none of us. I am committed to owning my part in the divorce, always. And I am hopefully clear on my self-awareness when it comes to my own struggles with money, depression, communication breakdowns, and disagreements with my ex-wife.
We tore up the 50/50 schedule that I brought into the counseling session. We started again with the SPO and the non-custodial rights and responsibilities. And while I gave up a huge piece of my "dad time" that day, I've never stopped working to show up for my kids at every opportunity afforded me.