Co-parenting can be challenging at first, but with a good list of co-parenting boundaries you may be surprised at how easy it can get. Boundaries foster respect for each other, set the ground rules for realistic expectations, and sustain a healthy co-parenting balance that allows your child to continue being happy and healthy. The following co-parenting boundaries can help you and your co-parent have an easier and more straightforward co-parenting relationship, and will help protect your child from the fallout of your divorce or separation.
List of Co-Parenting Boundaries Points 1 & 2: Check Yourself
Point 1: Accept and Acknowledge That Your Child Needs an Ongoing Relationship with Both of Their Parents
Even as you struggle to make peace with the fact that your relationship has ended, you should not forget that your ex is still the mother of your child, and that the child needs her as much as they need you. So this is a boundary for you as well as for your co-parent. The child loves both of you, and they deserve to continue having a loving relationship with each of you. Understanding and accepting that nothing can change this situation can help you start to appreciate the need for calming down and working on a good co-parenting relationship driven by mutual respect and love for your child.
Besides, trying to lock out the other parent from being in the life of the child is a bad idea because the child will start to ask questions when they get older, and you will have to explain why they grew up without their mom. And this is a situation that can easily destroy the relationship with your child when they realize they grew up without a mom simply because you could not accept to co-parent efficiently after your divorce.
Point 2: Never Speak Badly About The Other Parent To, In Front Of, or Anywhere Within Earshot Of Your Children
It is normal to have negative feelings for your co-parent after a divorce, and to feel an urge to talk negatively about them in the hope that it makes you feel better. But one of the most insensitive behaviors you can have as a co-parenting father is telling your child negative things about their mother, or bad mouthing their mother with your friends in the presence of the child. This behavior may cause the child to see you as a bad parent who does not want them to love their mother. The child may also feel like the message is directed to them since they have a natural bond with their mother, and they are aware that half of who they are comes from their mother
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Knowing that talking ill of your ex can cause devastating effects, what can you do to make sure that your resentment towards her doesn’t get the better of you?. If your negative feelings towards your ex become too much to bear, and if you feel an undying need to bad mouth her, seeing a counselor may be the best solution. You can also pour your heart out to a close friend, or in a support group meeting. And if you must, you can discuss your feelings with the mother, so long as the kids are not around.
Accepting and acknowledging that your child needs to have a strong and loving relationship with both of their parents is the key to unlocking a successful co-parenting relationship. Knowing that bad-mouthing the other parent in front of your child can be a recipe for disaster for both your child and your co-parenting relationship is important. In the next points in our list of co-parenting boundaries, we will look at other important ground rules to set in order to have a positive co-parenting relationship which will allow your child or children to thrive.
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