Sharing custody after the relationship between the parents has ended can be a challenging situation. Both adults might be ready to start new lives but as they continue to raise their children, they will need to communicate and be present in each other’s lives. If their relationship was a high-conflict one, the responsibilities brought on by shared parenting might seem impossible to meet. However, there are ways for parents to ease and overcome the challenges posed by shared parenting, particularly if they continue to focus on how positive it is for the children.
What makes shared parenting difficult?
There are a variety of challenges encountered by parents who share custody. These include:
- Living away from your children part of the time
- Having to communicate with your ex-spouse
- Missing important milestones in the child’s life
- Negotiating which holidays the child spends with each parent
- Worrying about how your children are doing when they are not with you
Overcoming the challenges of shared parenting
As difficult as shared custody can seem, you can overcome these challenges and make it successful. Figuring out the best ways to communicate with your child’s other parent, for example, will help minimize conflict. You might choose to communicate via email, texts or in other ways, if you find that keeps you both focused on the kids. Keeping that communication open, honest and respectful can also help. When your children are with their other parent, you also will have time to explore new interests and hobbies, which can help you miss them less. As for holidays and special events, you can create new traditions that will make them extra special when you have the children with you.
Shared custody can benefit both parents and children. Keeping this in mind will help you focus on the future instead of on the challenges of the process.