Co Parenting Teens: 10 Tips For Parents Who Care

Are you a parent who’s recently separated? Are you raising a teen with someone who’s no longer your romantic partner? Are you finding that co parenting is more of a challenge than you ever imagined?

Also known as shared parenting, this isn’t an easy situation and it’s affected by the reciprocal interactions of the parents involved, explains Deborah Serani, licensed psychologist, award-winning author, senior adjunct university professor, and a TEDx speaker.

The child is at risk if one of the parents isn’t parenting in a healthy and productive manner.

Good co parenting is a mixture of patience, open communication, and empathy, which can be hard to achieve, especially with couples who’ve gone through a rough breakup.

If domestic violence or substance abuse is not an issue, both parents play a pivotal role in the child’s life, especially for their emotional and mental health.

The problem for a lot of co parents is getting past their history and resentments and focusing on the child.

They’re set back by differences in parenting styles and may clash because of distinctive rules and discipline. Consequently, the child’s stability, happiness and healthy growth are compromised.

When they don’t interact and make decisions together, the child will be negatively affected by the conflict and feel less safe, find it harder to solve problems.

Children will also and have a higher risk of ADHD, depression and anxiety, according to Help Guide, a non-profit mental health and wellness website that provides information based on evidence.

The challenge is to do your best to make co parenting successful by excluding your personal relationship with your previous partner from the co parenting.

Instead of thinking about the past you have, consider your co parenting a new relationship solely for the child’s well-being.

here’s no doubt that rebuilding trust and working together to raise a healthy and successful child doesn’t come easy, and both sides need make the effort.

Though broken up in a romantic sense, you’re still both parents to your children and it’s of utmost importance to put their interests first if you want your co parenting to be successful.

When done properly, you can keep your calm and consistency with as fewer conflicts as possible and help your teens thrive.

Now check out 10 useful co parenting tips that can help you build a stable co parenting relationship for the sake of your child….

10 Co Parenting Tips for Caring Parents

1. Don’t put your child in the middle

Even though you may never entirely lose all the negative emotions about your breakup, it’s crucial to understand that they’re your problem, not the child’s.

Parents who need to better their co parenting should stop putting the child in the middle of the problems with their exes.

A common fault of many co parents is using the child as a messenger- i.e. you’re placing them in the center of the issue. And, it’s important to stop saying negative stuff about your ex partner in front of your children.

Avoid pressuring them into choosing a side. Remember, every child has the right to a relationship with a parent which is free of influence from the other parent.

2. Show empathy & be flexible

Lorraine C. Ladish, contributing writer for Huff Post, founder of VivaFifty.com, author, and speaker emphasizes that children suffer when their parents argue about schedules in front of them.

Sometimes, even though it may not be according to the plan you have, if the other parent wants to take them to a game or some other place your teen would enjoy, let them go. They will thank you later for enabling them this freedom.

If Father’s Day falls on the maternal parent’s weekend to have the child, then show maturity and flexibility and allow a change in schedule.

Practicing empathy is an important step and sometimes, especially in situations with our children, we’ll need to put ourselves in their shoes or in the shoes of the other parent.

Show respect towards the other parent and treat them like you want them to treat you.

When you feel stuck, just think that the other side loves the children too and act from a place of love, rather than from a place of resentment.

3. Respect their time with the other parent