herald

Tuesday 17 October 2017

Tips for shared parenting

While you may need and feel you have a right to see your children 50pc of the time, it doesn't always work out so neatly. Be flexible in your arrangements and always discuss changes to the routine with each other in advance.

There may be times when you are in conflict with your partner over the raising of your children. Keep this conflict away from them and communicate with each other in a mature way, really listening to the other's concerns.

Making a child take your side in a conflict with your ex puts a pointless and damaging strain on your family set-up. Let your child love and respect parents equally.

Just as you want to move on with your life, so does your ex. This will lead to changing situations, such as new partners. Be open and try to accept the new, as you are leading your child by example.

>Don't try to be just the 'fun' parent

When one parent spends all the boring, schooldays with you and the other all the holidays and fun time, you can start to compare your parents

>If you're not there, call

Sometimes even a phonecall to say 'goodnight' makes all the difference. If you are separated for long periods, schedule a regular phonecall.

>Don't let your child down

Most children with separated parents can't wait to see one or the other. If you let them down when you say you're going to be there, it can make them feel insecure and unloved.

>Listen to your child

If your child is upset about the break-up situation, sit down and talk with them about it. Sometimes just knowing that your parent understands is enough, even when things aren't as you would like.

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