The holidays are generally a stressful time for most people, and stress has the tendency to bring out the worst in us. But, what if you turn that energy around and give yourself the gift of improving your co-parenting relationship during this season of light and love, instead?
1. Speak kindly.
Greet your co-parent warmly. Say nice things about the other parent to your child and let your child overhear you speak positively about him or her. Speaking kindly may also help to reduce your stress levels from other sources in your life.
2. Let go of perfection.
Be flexible. Work around your co-parent’s schedule and needs as much as possible even if it makes you late for a party or unable to finish baking those cookies.
3. Respect boundaries.
Show up on time. Don’t enter the other parent’s home without being invited. Refrain from asking about or commenting on their rituals, guests, or schedule of the other parent.
4. Find shared values.
You may find a million things that drive you crazy about your former partner, but if you look for it, you will probably also find that you’re aligned about what you want for your child. Make that the most important aspect of your relationship.
5. Tell a new story.
Use time with loved ones to create a new picture of your co-parenting relationship. Instead of sharing grievances with your friends or family, share stories of what has worked or how things are improving. When a support network gets on board with change, it can catalyze transformation.
Although at face value these ideas may seem challenging, if you are able to channel your holiday energy in this direction the payoff will be greater for everyone involved - you, your co-parent and your children. For more on co-parenting, reach out to us any time via our contact us page!