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Home / Parenting

How to co-parent this season without causing friction

Parenting
By Esther Muchene | 5 months ago | 3 min read

 Dealing with a stubborn ex can be hard especially with a child involved (Photo: Courtesy)

Christmas can be a particularly difficult holiday when you’re in a co-parenting relationship. The holidays are meant to be a time of love and togetherness and often, this backfires when you and your ex-partner don’t necessarily see eye to eye.

Generally, it’s not easy to successfully parent in a healthy way when you’re dealing with a stubborn ex. Toxic co-parenting situations are a real thing and it even gets tougher during holidays.

To have a more enjoyable Christmas this year, you can learn to co-parent with no stress. These are some of the things you should consider as you welcome the festive season:

  • Always prioritize the kids

Your children should always be the main focus of the decisions you make when it comes to parenting.

It’s possible to get carried away by the reality of the fact that things didn’t work out and it’s likely that you both have different parenting styles. Granted.

There are many sources of friction when it comes to this parenting dynamic but you should never forget that your kids need to take center stage.

Keeping this in mind will allow your kids to grow up in a healthy environment and help create a peaceful Christmas atmosphere for everyone.

  • Communicate openly

Effective communication is the key that will make your parenting journey smoother especially during holiday seasons.

You need to assess what your plans are for Christmas and be honest with each other when the parenting strategies for the holidays aren’t working out well.

Proper communication will allow both of you to collaborate as parents for a happy Christmas and be on same page.

 Remember parenting is not about your emotions, put your child first (Photo: Courtesy)
  • Manage your emotions

If the breakup happened a while ago, it’s easier for you to understand that Christmas can never be exactly the way it was when everything was okay.

For others, the fall out is still being processed and it’s hard to enjoy the festivities when the wounds are still fresh.

The best way to handle a breakup and still parent in a healthy way is getting therapy and keeping your emotions in check.

This way you will be able to find your inner peace and avoid unnecessary fights and arguments with your ex that can ruin your kids Christmas.

  • Be flexible

A secret that will create a healthy parenting balance is compromise. It’s understandable that you both have certain plans for the holidays and would like things to go your way but that rarely works out well.

As you create a space for open and honest communication as parents, you need to work together as a team rather than trying to move forward as enemies.

Be more flexible and don’t insist on how you would like everything to go. If the kids can’t be with you over this season, don’t push it or force issues. Look for an alternative date you can all be united without clashing with your ex’s schedule.

  • Respect each other

Many times, you will find that the lack of respect for one another is the main reason why co-parenting friction comes up.

You might be dealing with situations where arguments and insults are the norm and boundaries as far as respecting each other’s time don’t exist.

These boundary breaches will surely lead to a very miserable Christmas for you and the kids which isn’t what you want.

Be honest about what you personally need to change and set firm boundaries to prevent problems.

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