Getting divorced is a hard decision. Going through a divorce when children are involved, is even harder. You are both parents and both want to be a part of the upbringing of your children, but the divorce is going to uproot all your plans and now you’ll need to figure out a co-parenting plan that works for your children and you.
The topic of co-parenting comes with a few pros and cons to co-parenting. These pros and cons will help you fully prepare for a life of co-parenting with your soon-to-be ex-spouse.
The Pros of Coparenting
There are a few pros to co-parenting. I know, I know, it sounds completely counterintuitive to be looking for a positive in divorce and custody arrangements but there are some good things that come from coparenting.
Not only does it help children adjust more quickly, they’re also able to maintain those lasting relationships. No parent wants their children to grow up and only see the other side of the family “once in a while”.
A child needs both sides of their family to be healthy, happy and whole. Co-parenting helps ensure this happens.
Another pro to coparenting is that it forces parents to communicate more often than they normally would. It sounds counterintuitive, especially if one or both of you are bitter about the divorce. However, communication isn’t just about talking to your former spouse, it’s also about communicating with them as parents.
If you’re able to communicate for your children, they’ll feel more secure and comfortable within the family dynamic because they know their needs will always be met if their parents can communicate and co-parent.
The Cons of Coparenting
There are also cons to co-parenting. These may not all apply to you, especially if your divorce is amicable and it’s more of a “see you on the field for the big game” kind of situation. However, it’s important to know the cons of co-parenting as you head into your divorce and custody situation.
The first con is this:
It makes the possibility of reconciliation with your spouse less likely, which brings many regrets. A lot of divorced parents will say that they wish they could have coparented better instead of trying to be their child’s best friend or putting them first.
If you’re able to put your children first, it’s less likely that they’ll grow up resenting the separation of their parents and hold onto anger or hate.
Another con of co-parenting is that you have more to lose in this type of arrangement. You may need to sacrifice your entire life if you’re financially dependent on your spouse, but then again they are too.
So it’s important to know these pros and cons before deciding on a co-parenting plan. Some of these cons may be more applicable to your situation than others, but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared for a life of coparenting with your soon-to-be ex-spouse.