After a divorce, it is not always easy to get along with an ex-spouse. It can become even more challenging when ex-spouses share a child, as well as parenting time and responsibilities.
It is only natural for parents to still feel some resentment or anger towards each other after a divorce, but these emotions can interfere with parenting. And it can be detrimental for children to see their parents in constant conflict with each other.
In these cases, many parents choose a parallel parenting arrangement. This minimizes contact and interference between parents and allows them to focus entirely on parenting. However, effective parallel parenting requires parents to plan carefully.
What must Kentucky parents do to make parallel parenting work?
1. Establish means of communication – and stick to it
Parallel parenting might mean less contact between parents, but that does not mean they can cut off all communication entirely. However, parents must be strategic about how they communicate.
In these cases, it is often beneficial to restrict communication to digital means and avoid face-to-face interactions. For example, parents can limit interaction to only:
- Text messages
- Parenting app messenger systems
Written communication like these options allows parents to remain to-the-point and civil with each other. It ensures they share important information with each other, but also reduces the risk of conflict erupting between them.
2. Be consistent
With reduced communication between parents, both must prioritize following the rules of the parenting plan. For example, parents must:
- Ensure they are on time for pick-up and drop-off exchanges
- Follow similar rules in each household to create stability for the child
- Inform the other parent of any scheduling changes or issues proactively
Being consistent and predictable in a parallel parenting arrangement is not only beneficial for the parents, but also for the children.
3. Agree to put the kids first
Even if parents do not get along well after a divorce, there is one thing they must agree on for parallel parenting to work. They must both make sure they will focus on the children.
After all, this is the main point of parallel parenting. It actively shifts the focus from the tension remaining between parents to the well-being and best interests of the children.