Co-parenting after divorce comes with a lot of benefits. Your children’s lives are going to change drastically, but sharing custody gives a chance for them to spend quality time and with each parent. And having the guidance of both their parents through it all can make the transition a little more seamless.

In order to provide the security of two organized households for your children, you’ll have to put a plan together with your ex. Creating a parenting plan that keeps your children top of mind is crucial. And setting up a way for you to coordinate co-parent duties respectfully with your ex can help set you on the right foot after divorce.

Speed it up

It’s important to not put the planning process on the back burner. Not having a system for child pick-ups and drop-offs in place or not knowing which days of the week you will have parenting time until the last minute will likely create tension between you and your co-parent. On top of that, your children may suffer with a lack of consistency in their life.

Stay kind

Once you begin the planning process, your children’s needs should be at the heart of the plan. For example, you might be angry about ending your marriage and not want your children to have anything to do with your ex. But if they are a good parent and haven’t done anything to cause harm to your children, then it’s best to compromise and create ways for your ex to be a staple part of their lives. Strong parent-child relationships can help your child with developmental growth and positive mental health.

Keep in touch

Whether you are on a good page with your ex or not, it can be helpful to choose a method for how you and your ex will communicate. Maybe you will choose to send all child-related messages via email, or maybe you will opt for a co-parenting app. Either way, keeping everything in one place can help you personally keep track of the custody schedule. Plus, it will create a paper trail for you to reference if any issues arise.

If this is your first go at a parenting plan, it can be helpful to work with an experienced family law attorney to guide you through the process.