The transition from being in a tight-knit family unit to a co-parenting relationship can be a tough one. It can often be difficult to accept that your children will no longer enjoy the security of a traditional family home. However, all co-parents should remember that children can thrive after their parents’ divorce when both parents put their differences aside and work on being successful co-parents.
As part of the transition, you will need to make sure that the allocation of parental responsibilities is done in a way that you believe is fair. In Illinois, the courts aim to reach a decision that is in the best interests of the child. In most cases, this means ensuring that there is a continuation of the parent-child relationship.
Co-parents are often advised to create a parenting plan. This serves as an agreement that addresses a multitude of parenting topics, from how the child should be disciplined, to the responsibilities and schedules of each parent. The following are some things you should consider when developing your role as a co-parent.
Maintaining a routine
Both parents likely have their own busy schedules, and, therefore, it’s important that they can work together so that a seamless routine can be developed for their child. By working together to allocate responsibilities, the child will feel secure, and it will be possible for both parents to raise their children while earning an income. In the parenting plan, you may want to address pick-ups and drop-offs, as well as logistics regarding extra-curricular activities.
Agreeing on coherent disciplining techniques
If one parent enforces strict rules but the other ignores misbehavior, this may lead to behavioral problems in the future. The child should have coherent rules that apply at the homes of both of their parents.
Developing healthy habits
You may want to agree on rules for your child, whether it is deciding how long they are allowed to spend using their iPad each day, or when they can eat candy. These things can be addressed in the parenting plan and adjusted if necessary.
If you have recently gone through a divorce in Illinois, it is important that you feel you have a good relationship with your children. If you are unhappy with your situation, you can request a modification of the allocation of parental responsibilities.