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CoParenting Talk (a discussion forum)

jimdahl

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Everything posted by jimdahl

  1. Why do we go through the hassle and pain of coparenting (often with someone with whom we might prefer not to have any contact if not for the kids)? It's because kids benefit from multiple parents. The other parent's involvement involvement isn't just for them, it's for the kids. From an Instagram post--"I’m not just a Saturday playmate."
  2. Help the kids to communicate with the other parent - This generally applies any time of year. But, when you pick your kids up from school, the first thing you probably ask them is what happened at school that day. If you can find a way (the logistics probably depend on the age of the child and the relationship with the coparent), letting the kids share the most exciting immediate news with the other parent really helps establish that you're both involved in their lives. That could be a text message, a phone call, or a Skype or FaceTime session.
  3. Establish consistent routines - As much as possible, the kids should know who's going to be picking them up from school and where they're going after school each day. If the children spend some school nights with each parent, having similar structure around the evening and morning will further help the kids feel comfortable and know what to expect. Homework, screen time, chores, and bedtimes are among the topics coparents can discuss and make similar across the kids' homes.
  4. Plan for unexpected expenses - If you have a parenting agreement, it probably addresses how to handle educational expenses, but unexpected expenses could arise that aren't specifically accounted for. You should have a plan, preferably in a written agreement, on how to deal with those expenses. You might split them as per your agreement (whether 50-50, proportional to income, or other), but also probably need some way to limit expenses and give each parent control over how much they spend. Some recommend contributing to a joint account that's used to pay extra expenses (when the agreed upon amount is used up, paying for additional expenses would be up to the parent). If you communicate and get along well you could just agree on each expense as it comes up (either instantly reimbursing the other parent using something like Venmo, PayPal, or Apple Pay, or keeping a log of each parents' expenses in an app or a simple Google Docs spreadsheet and settling up once a month).
  5. Share school information - When parents live in two different houses, it requires coordination to ensure that both see school-related communications. The school probably mails things to one house, emails one parent, and sends homework, grades, and information about school events home with the kids. It's important to give both parents an opportunity to see that information, regardless of who it came to. Having a shared email account that is used for the kids' school and activities is a much more reliable way to make sure communications go to both parents than forwarding emails to each other. But, you still have to have a scheme to share information that comes home with the kids. You can send immediate photos of everything that comes home via text or coparenting apps, and send hardcopies of schoolwork or school flyers back and forth in a folder that always goes back and forth with the kids between houses.
  6. Back to school time brings all sorts of coparenting challenges and opportunities to do what's best for your kids! I'll try to post some tips in this thread as August goes on. Of course, everyone's situation is different, so if any of the suggestions below seems to contradict your situation or exclude you, just remember that the point is doing what's best for the kids! Share in school events - It would be great if both parents could make it to the band concert, the school performance, or the award ceremony. If sitting together works for you, that can send a nice message that you overlook your differences to support your kids. But if it would lead to conflict, it's ok to sit apart! If one parent can't make it, or you feel you must take turns, keep the other parent in the loop (as much as you can) on special events (e.g. send a photo, let the parent who isn't there share a call or a text with the kid).
  7. Another app roundup: Divorce is hard. These 7 apps can make coordinating and communicating with your ex easier (USA Today) OurFamilyWizard coParenter AppClose SupportPay TalkingParents Mend ("a personal coach for the brokenhearted") Divorceify (walks you through a divorce, including finding therapists, attorneys, and mediators)
  8. Family income goes down after divorce. What does this mean for kids education? - Desert News Divorcing? 13 clever tech tools to make it easier on you, your kids, and finances - Komando.com
  9. Another round-up of apps: Divorcing? 13 clever tech tools to make it easier on you, your kids, and finances - Komando.com They cover: Scheduling (cozi, Google Calendar, coparenter, CustodyJunction, SquareHub) Tracking child support costs (AppClose, SupportPay) Dealing with the legal system (CustodyXChange, DivorceLog, Talking Parents) Maintaining amicable divorces (amicable, OurFamilyWizard)
  10. I would make sure you help the kids do something for her. I wrote a bit about this last year: Mother's Day for the separated or divorced dads out there
  11. Without it being mentioned in a legal agreement, there's a fair chance you can't legally be obligated to anything. In a lot of places, you have no obligations after the kids are 18 UNLESS you sign a contract agreeing to continue to support them. That's a different question than whether you want to plan with your ex to help pay for your kids' college after they're 18. You might think it's the right thing to do, and want to make joint plans to do so, without necessarily legally obligating yourself to do so.
  12. My stepdaughter's mother lets her eat candy for dinner - Slate Interparental aggression often co-occurs with aggression toward kids - Penn State News Throwing everything into co-parenting after divorce - CBC .
  13. The 7 best coparenting apps out there - SheKnows Apps offer a range of services including secure/recorded messaging, sharing of documents, expense tracking/sharing, shared address books for kids' contacts, and even access to live mediators. Of course, sometimes all you need is a good calendar. Donald Trump Jr finalizes divorce from Vanessa Trump, but exes still co-parenting
  14. Another round-up of coparenting apps: The 7 best coparenting apps out there - SheKnows.com 2houses amicable coparently ourfamilywizard cozi talking parents google calendar
  15. I came across this article that I think summarizes it nicely: What type of relationship should I have with my co-parent now we're divorced? An important point is that all three of these are good parenting relationships. People so often seem to hold up "allied" as the ideal, but arm's length and autonomous can both be good parenting relationships, and more realistic for many people's divorces.
  16. Co-parenting app helps mediate - Fast Company ’One unique family’: Dad and stepdad-to-be inspire with harmonious co-parenting of little girl Woodling: Co-parenting suggestions for when ex is difficult - Florida Today
  17. Unless the split is completely mutual, if one person is still interested in the other, I wonder how such arrangements would survive one of them having a new partner. At one year of separation, I do a lot with my ex-wife and the kids, but I have to admit that some of that is attraction to my ex-wife. I'm not sure I'd be nearly as interested in doing stuff with my kids, ex-wife, and a new husband.
  18. I think the idea with trying to time it is that you want to give the kids a little time to adjust and talk to both, but not so much time as to confuse them about whether you're staying together, but also time it so you have as much information as possible about what the plan will be (who's moving, when, where, etc...). But, of course, there are many good reasons not to hit that perfect ideal.
  19. Kourtney Kardashian's holiday vacation with Scott Disick & Sofia Ritchie is co-parenting goals For newly divorced, it's important to stick to custody agreement over holidays Is 'platonic parenting' the relationship of the future?
  20. I posted this article in the general holiday thread, but this section is very relevant to the gift giving discussion. The best gift you can give your children this holiday season: You I wonder how many people actually pull that off? That takes a serious amount of coordination and cooperation.
  21. The best gift you can give your children this holiday season: You
  22. Our plan is to split Christmas this year with a bit of back-and-forth. She'll get them Christmas Eve Day, including the evening, but I get them at bedtime so they wake up at my place on Christmas Day. I do Christmas Day, but according to the standard schedule that's actually her day, so they'll go back to her at the end of the day. I'm hoping we work it out so we spend some (most?) of that time together as a family, but it's only a week away and my outreach so far has been ignored. This is pretty much the only holiday we split like that, everything else we alternate years. But, neither of us are yet willing to give up Christmas entirely. The only drawback is it means no travel for either of us, so she took the kids to do Christmas with her side of the family last weekend.
  23. https://divorceandchildren.com/2016/12/gift-giving-tips-for-divorced-parents/ Excellent article. Don't compete, cut the strings, don't undermine the other parent, and take the high road!
  24. Dealing with divorce during the holidays
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