Newly separated parents in Illinois may be struggling to find a joint child custody schedule that works for everyone. Though it may be a challenge, parents should create – and try to stick to – a set schedule, but they should also be accommodating of each other when necessary. Being flexible and having a predetermined schedule are just a couple characteristics of healthy coparenting.
Parents who effectively coparent will tell each other as soon as they can if they need to make a last-minute change to a custody schedule, and they will generally be good at communicating regarding the needs of their children. Another sign that parents have a healthy relationship is that they will let each other know if they plan to use a babysitter, and they are even willing to give the other person more parenting time if the other parent can babysit instead.
Healthy parents also recognize that it is important for their children to have a good relationship with the other parent, and they refrain from saying negative things about their exes to their children. Effective coparents will also try to agree on the basics, like issues pertaining to discipline or education. If one parent sets a bedtime of 8:00 p.m. and the other has no bedtime at all, this can undermine a parent’s efforts to provide structure in the child’s life.
If exes are doing a good job of coparenting, their children will perceive that they get along well, which is better for a child’s emotional well-being. These parents are also able to attend events together without fighting or tension, like their child’s school performance or a back-to-school night.
For most people, effective coparenting is a challenge. Individuals who face difficulties in creating or sticking to a child custody schedule may want to consult with a family law attorney.