5 Summer Co-Parenting Don’ts

Co-Parenting Don’ts

Summer is in full swing and, in many ways, co-parenting is even more challenging. Away from the indisputable school schedule and all that goes with it, you’re left with more open reign. And more opportunities for disagreements with your ex on how to divvy up and spend that time. But if you want to keep the peace, here’s what not to do in your summer co-parenting.

1. Wait Until the Last Minute

If you’re planning on taking a vacation this summer, chances are your ex is too. Sparks will fly, and not the good kind if you wait until the last minute to share those details with each other. To avoid booking trips at the same time or having trips conflict with other plans, make sure you get together well ahead to work out the schedule for summer.

2. Make Assumptions

If you assume that the responsibility for pickups and drop-offs at summer activities/camps will mimic what you and your ex have scheduled during the school year, you may be way off. Unlike school, the timing of these may not jive with each of your schedules leaving you struggling to figure it out at the last minute and causing frustration to build.

3. Refuse to Compromise

Along the same lines as above, summer co-parenting is a different beast. Plans are more likely to be fluid, things may come up, and if you refuse to deviate from your regular schedule, aside from more arguing between you and your ex, the kids will ultimately suffer not only from the extra tension but also from missing out on some of the summer fun.

4. Make Communication Difficult

Sure, you may be thrilled to put some distance between you and your ex but don’t use summer traveling to try to limit contact between said ex and your kids. And again, sending a text about changing plans will be much easier in the long run than arguing about why you didn’t later. 

5. Forget to Focus on the Kids

Summer break is one of the best parts of childhood so make sure their wants and needs are a priority. If your ex is planning an amazing vacation that your kids would love but it’s on one of your weeks, if possible, agree to swap. If you can’t take the kids to/from a camp they’ve always wanted to attend but your ex can; make accommodations so they don’t miss out. Don’t try to one-up each other in terms of summer fun either! Instead, include your kids in the planning and let them know it’s ok to have fun with and be excited about plans with their other parent.

Help for Summer Co-Parenting and Beyond

Co-Parenting Don’ts

Summertime or not, never put your kids in the middle of your challenges as co-parents. If the two of you are struggling, it might be time to consider mediation to resolve some of your co-parenting issues. In this process, a neutral third party trained in effective communication strategies can help you negotiate amicably towards an agreement. Mediation is often a cheaper and quicker alternative to getting your lawyers involved and litigating the situation in court. Plus, we offer fully virtual coaching and mediation services for added flexibility and convenience – you don’t even have to be in the same room!

For help with your summer co-parenting planning, contact us today to learn more or for a free consultation.

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