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How to co-parent successfully after divorce

In most situations, parents in New Jersey who get a divorce must also work out a plan for co-parenting. Co-parenting can be one of the most difficult parts of a divorce, but it is important to children's well-being.

Communication can be difficult for parents after a divorce, but they should not use their children as go-betweens for messages. They need to work out a way that they can communicate during a divorce even if it is by email or text. There are online tools that can help. Divorced parents might also want to consider family therapy or a co-parenting class.

Parents should try to be flexible about their child's schedule. For example, one parent might have the opportunity to take the child to something fun during a time that the child is supposed to be with the other parent. If it is in the child's best interests, the other parent should allow the child to go if possible. This is all part of the effort each parent should be putting toward encouraging the child's relationship with the other parent. Parents should also try to maintain similar schedules and rules between their homes. This helps children feel more secure. Finally, parents should try to share the child's important moments with one another using texts or photos.

Parents may also need to renegotiate child custody at certain points. Judges generally prefer for parents to work out minor issues without returning to court, but if one parent is relocating or there are other major changes, it may be necessary to seek a modification. One example might be if parents divorce when a child is very young. As the child gets older, the child's needs may change, and some older children may want a say in the custody schedule.

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