In researching my father's day article, I talked to several dads who had joint custody of their children. They were going through the same machinations that many working moms deal with on a daily basis -- getting out of work in time to pick kids up from after care or rescheduling morning meetings to get a child to school on time.
But co-parenting, especially after a divorce, is tricky. I've seen some ugly situations out there. Doing it the right way can make a tremendous difference in in how much it affects your relationship with your kids and your work life balance.
- Don't vent your anger in front of the children. Save it for a friend or your therapist. Recognize that the co-parenting relationship is a marathon and not a sprint, and that you remain bonded for life through your children.
- Let bygones be bygones, and help each other out if you can. If your ex needs a break on the schedule this week, you may need a break next week, so be a team.
- Make the distinction between you two as a couple and as co-parents.
- Think of divorce from a child's perspective. To effectively co-parent, both parents need to live near to each other so children don't have to travel too much or too far.
How has divorce affected your work-life balance? Is there anything you have done in co-parenting that makes life easier?