Your marriage is over. Your spouse asked for a divorce and ended the relationship. However, you had kids together, so that relationship will never really end. It just changes. Now you're not romantically involved, but you're still co-parents.
How can you adjust to this change? What do you need to do to make things go well for you and the kids? Here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Enjoy the free moments you have when your kids are with your ex. Many parents find this hard, and that's understandable, but you'll live a low-stress life if you just accept it and use that free time to your benefit.
- Understand that you both need to be flexible. The parenting plan guides you, but life is unpredictable. Be ready to bend when needed and ask your ex to do the same.
- Always put the kids first. There is no more important rule. Every decision you make has to put them ahead of yourself.
- Encourage that relationship with your ex. Don't tell the children not to text, call, write or talk online. Let them do it. Understand that, no matter how you feel, it's best for them if they have a strong relationship with both of you.
- Be respectful of your ex, of their rights, and of their time with the kids. Make the drop-offs on time. Pick the kids up on schedule. Don't try to infringe on their time or steal little bits of it for yourself.
As you can see, the key lies in cooperating with your ex while also knowing what legal rights you have.