“Out of clutter find simplicity; from discord find harmony;
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”
1. They Create a “Child Safety Zone.”
With their parents’ separation and divorce, children lose the protective cocoon of the intact family. Successful co-parents realize it’s up to them to create a new cocoon for their children. An outstanding starting place is parents’ commitment that of the 10,000 minutes in every week, the very few minutes that the children see the parents belong to the children and are for showing them consistent courtesy and goodwill. Parents dedicating 4 minutes to their children’s right to feel peace will still have 9,996 other minutes to do anything else they wish.
2. They celebrate good things the children do with the other parent.
Children want permission to love and enjoy both their parents. It costs nothing – and yields everything – to say to them, “Mom has such a great trip planned for you guys,” or “I’m so glad you and Daddy had such a hoot at your game.”
3. The share information and seek each other’s opinions.
Sharing enough information to parent within an intact family is hard enough; extra effort is obviously required when children are raised between two homes. Successful co-parents choose to see each other as assets, and they aren’t threatened by differences in opinion. They make all-important non-emergency decisions together (what medical care or counseling to seek for the children, what school to choose, and what religious and ethical values to stress).
4. They share compliments and positive memories about each other.
Children perceive that they are half whatever good or lack of good lives in their mom and half of whatever good or lack of good lives in their dad. Successful co-parents go beyond never criticizing each other (a pretty obvious rule) – they’re brave enough to tell their children about the good in each other.
5. They protect the children from adult roles.
Successful co-parents never allow children to take on any adult responsibilities. These parents don’t ask, or permit, their children to become spies, messengers, whipping posts, confidants, mediators, or decision makers.
6. They stay out of legal combat.
Successful co-parents realize happy and healthy children grow up in families, not in lawsuits.
7. They enjoy and admire their children.
Successful co-parents don’t allow whatever has happened to their intimate relationship to stand in the way of making childhood a joy for everyone – child and parent