During these unprecedented times, it can feel like everything is upside down and back to front. We’ve put together some tips for co-parenting during coronavirus.
Many of us are attempting to work remotely and, simultaneously, trying to help our children learn online at home. There are also many parents who are also trying to co-parent effectively during this crisis.
Always Act In Your Child’s Best Interests
The most important thing you need to remember is that both parents always need to act in the best interests of your children.
It’s not about who does what and when, or for how long – it’s about making sure your children are in the best possible care during this pandemic.
Don’t focus too much about whose turn it is to have them – what is safe and what is best?
Know that plans will likely need to change – potentially regularly.
Given that government advice and local restrictions are changing on a seemingly daily basis, being flexible is going to be essential during the coming weeks and months.
It may not be possible to follow your parenting agreements or less formal arrangements, so be flexible with your ex to ensure that your children remain safe, happy, and healthy.
Along with flexibility must come understanding. If your ex can’t have the kids when they usually would, either because they need to work, or because they need to isolate, or physically cannot leave their local area, be understanding.
Don’t hold a grudge, or worse, complain about it to your children.
It’s imperative that if you’re co-parenting, communication remains both open and crystal clear between you and your ex.
There can be no room for misunderstandings when it comes to the care of your children and what is best for them, so be clear and concise when talking with your ex. If needed, make sure your communications are written either by text or email, to ensure there is no room for misinterpretation or ‘he said she said’. If it helps, use an App like Divvito to communicate with the other parent about arrangements for the kids – it can eliminate or, at least, significantly reduce misunderstandings.
Consider Alternative Short Term Arrangements
If needed, consider putting in place a short term arrangement for parenting.
It could be better for your children to remain in one home during this time – for example, if one parent is working more hours, or is working as a front line health care worker and wants to prevent a potential transmission.
These decisions need to be based on your personal circumstances – you all need to work together to establish what’s going to be best for your children and home environment.
If you can’t come to a mutual agreement regarding short term childcare arrangements, a family mediation session can help you work out a way forward.
Move On Mediation is conducting family mediation sessions via phone and video so no face to face contact is needed to mediate successfully. If you need help navigating co-parenting during coronavirus, contact us today.
Find out more about how our family mediation sessions are conducted during the Covid-19 crisis, or get in touch now.