Are you divorced or separated from your ex-partner? And you want to maintain a healthy relationship with your kids? That can be a challenge, and it will consume some serious patience and respect to do that for the sake of your children. What is Co-Parenting? Image credit: Adobe Stock For the children involved, divorce may be difficult to absorb, as they fear having to live with only one of their parents. Co-parenting is usually the ultimate solution where both former partners will make it a lot less difficult for the kids. The key to successful co-parenting is to know how to divide your personal matter with your ex-partner in order to prioritise your children. Your marriage may be over, but it is not your family. Behaving in the best interests of your children should be your number one priority! The first step to becoming a mature, caring co-parent is to place the needs of your children ahead of your own at all times. 7 Ways on How To Co-Parent To Maintain a Healthy Relationship With Your Children 1) Create a Strong Communication Image credit: Adobe Stock Disagreements will occur and it is wise to keep intense periods away from the kids. You should always plan a date and a suitable place to talk if you need to have it out, or discuss anything of interest with your co-parent. Certain disputes, of course, simply cannot wait. So, if you need to argue in front of the children, do it wisely. Just remember that you will never get rude, and treat each other respectfully. Communication is key, remember? 2) Be Flexible With Each Other Image credit: Adobe Stock While daily routine is important, it is also crucial to be flexible with each other. Both parents need to be as cooperative as possible because it is a healthy strategy of co-parenting. Even if you feel that the same courtesy would not be returned to you, it will be more efficient to clarify the way you want things to be between you than to constantly remind them that the present situation does not work or disappoint you. 3) Don't Mock Each Other in Front of the Children Image credit: Adobe Stock Expressing an attitude of respect towards your co-parent is important to the well-being of children, and it is necessary to protect children from tension.\u00a0 There are few things that are more dangerous for a child than witnessing conflict between parents. One of it is when his or her parent is in a continual conflict. The ongoing conflict cuts to the core of the well-being of a child, since children see themselves as half their mother and half their father in nature. Remember to keep this mentality away from the kids at the center of all communications between you and the other parent. 4) Make a Shared Schedule Image credit: Adobe Stock Clear your calendar monthly to talk to your co-parent about the progress of your children. Have daily family sessions with the kids, if possible, to review education, holidays and whether the timetable is working. For anyone involved, parenting time changes are more stable when the schedule reflects a solid, fixed pattern rather than a sketchy "we'll see" type of structure. 5) Set Ground Rules Image credit: Adobe Stock Both parents need to agree on a set of rules. Laws should be consistent and agreed in all household. Children need routine and order as much as they can resist. Concerns such as meal time, bed time, and finishing activities need to be consistent. The same rules should apply to school works and tasks. 6) Seek Professional Advice From a Therapist Image credit: Adobe Stock Perhaps, if you have been struggling to deal with a very difficult ex in frustration, you just need to get in touch with a therapist. Co-parenting can be very hard, so, it is okay for you to seek help because you want to be understood and comforted. This is possible in the hands of a professional therapist who specialises in co-parenting problems and can act as a mediator or as an objective guide to this journey. 7) Agree To Disagree Image credit: Adobe Stock Sometimes, in order to satisfy your children, you might feel like you have to put a stand on your opinions more than your ex-partner. Often, if they simply did not get around to your point of view, you might feel like the future is bleak. But remember, you do not have to compromise on everything. It was truly impossible to do that. The best thing you can do is to remember that you need a balanced and healthy team to keep the child's well-being in focus. Why Is It Important To Co-Parent? There are a few down side and negative impacts on your children if you choose against co-parenting. According to a research, here are some consequences of parents who neglect the duty of co-parenting: Anxiety Fear of abandonment Eating disorders Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Depression Suicidal thoughts On a Final Note, You Should Remember: You should always remind yourself that you cannot control your partner, but you can be a responsible parent to your children. If your ex-partner mistreats or abandons your children, it is always a right decision to fight for your own rights. When your kids grow up, they will realise that you were there for them. For more interesting stories and fun recipes, stay tuned to Motherhood Story!