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Co-parenting after a separation or divorce

- Co-parenting is when two (or more) people are parenting a child but not as one unit. If you’re co-parenting after a separation or divorce here are some tips on how to help your child.

Things you can try

  1. Acknowledge your feelings about the separation and find ways to look after yourself

    This is really important as it will help you manage your emotions and allow you to focus on your child.

    If you’re in the thick of a breakup we have some advice on supporting your child during a separation and divorce.

  2. Establish a shared understanding of what co-parenting means

    If you’re struggling to agree on how you’ll co-parent, try starting with a list of what your child can expect from you both.

  3. Work as a team with your co-parent to manage the details of parenting decisions

    Try to set ground rules in advance to avoid conflict later. For example, you will need to agree on when and where your children will visit, how the parent living apart keeps in touch, between visits.

  4. Create a parenting plan

    Use the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service's parenting plan. It is free to use and they have guidance on how to fill it in.

  5. Think about your children’s happiness, stability, and future well-being

    Look at the co-parenting arrangements from the children’s perspective.  Take the focus away from you and your co-parents feelings.

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