Today, parenting roles, styles and relationships are taking a progressive leap. Parents don’t necessarily have to marry or even live together to raise a loving, connected family. However, choosing this arrangement raises a lot of questions. It is important to communicate with one another throughout the process and set guidelines, even if the parents are not living together. Here are some tips for a successful co-parenting situation when you don’t live together.
What is Co-Parenting?
Co-parenting is when two parents of a child share joint responsibility for raising the child and are not married. The two parents are in frequent contact with one another in an effort to create a healthy balance for the child and do not necessarily live together. Co-parenting can be a result of a divorce or of parents choosing to raise a child without being married. They can be platonic co-parents or tried dating as romantic partners. By using services like Modamily, people now have the ability to create their own path to a family without needing marriage.
Co-Parenting, Without Living Together
Co-parenting doesn’t mean you have to live together. For example, you meet your co-parent online and decide to start a family together. It is important to create a clear line of communication throughout the whole pregnancy, birthing, raising and custody process. A way to practice this could be designated days throughout the week to talk about how each parent is feeling and what they could improve on. Co-parenting works if you want it to, but you need to be open to compromise. A successful co-parenting situation works because you do it for your child and love for your family.
In addition, choosing to co-parent has many benefits for the child’s life as well, such as teaching a unique aspect of patience, compromise and communication. You have the ability to lead by example and show your child they have the opportunity to create their own life path.
Tips To Create A Co-Parenting Communication Plan
Congratulations! You have met the person you want to co-parent your children with; together you will raise a beautiful family. Now it’s important to know where to begin, this part can seem challenging. A communication plan sets guidelines written down in a signed document by each partner that they agree to the standards of conduct for raising the child.
- Start by having a detailed conversation with your partner. Make sure that under all circumstances the child is the priority and listen to each other’s expectations for this arrangement.
- Identify the situation and establish what relationship do you have with each other? How will you identify this relationship with other people?
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help or additionally accept help. This arrangement has no pre-set guidelines, which is great because this means you get to make your own rules. If you need to ask for guidance from a counselor, trusted friend or family member it might make a negotiation between you and your partner go smoother.
- Respect the co-parent’s right to privacy.
- Create a healthy environment where the child will be free to love and honor each parent by promoting in them a genuine respect and affection toward both parties.
- To attend parenting education classes, particularly as they address jointly dealing with child guidance, access, and other important parenting skills and awareness.
- Develop a direct child-parent bond, and encourage the children to discuss their grievances directly with a parent.
- Revise and change standards as time goes on.
Co-Parenting Ideas To Stay Connected While Away
While the child is at the other parent’s house, they can stay connected by permitting a quick FaceTime to check in and say hello. Depending on the child’s age, you could FaceTime a favorite kids’ storybook and read it to them as they settle in bed. Or, you could introduce an impromptu puppet show with their favorite characters that share little stories about your day. It also depends on how long the child stays at each of the parent’s houses, but if they live states away this could be an every other night activity for everyone to look forward to.
Co-Parenting Live Stream
Since storytime doesn’t work well with older kids, a great alternative is just a live stream. Meaning, FaceTiming your kid without the pressure of having a full conversation. Perhaps your co-parent is busy making dinner or stepped out of the house. A live stream of you being there as they work on homework or study sheets is a great way to connect while they work. You can be there to help spell a word or work through a math problem.
Key Points For Co-parenting Separately
Both Partners Should Have Quality Time With Their Kids
It is important for kids to have both of their parents play a central role in their lives. Whether you’re in a platonic co-parenting situation or a romantic relationship, you both need to spend quality time with the kids and have a connected, loving relationship. Kids need love from both parents. Some activities you could enjoy together with your kids include playing a game, crafting, watching a favorite TV show, taking a walk or bike ride and much more!
Two Houses, Same Rules
Children need consistency and stability to feel secure, to be less stressed and to ensure a healthy development. Rules (bedtime, meal times, rewards and punishments, etc.) should be the same in each house. Make sure you’re on the same page with your co-parent on this.
Choosing Your Co-Parent With Modamily
While many co-parenting websites and apps are out there, none feature a co-parent qualities ranking list, which allows you to find the best candidate for your situation and aligns with your values and plans for raising a child. Modamily has over 30,000 users for you to find the perfect co-parent match! Modamily also offers surrogacy search options, known sperm and egg donors and single parent by choice resources.
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