Many divorcing couples see divorce as the end of their relationship, but when small children are involved, it is more about redefining the relationship as co-parents. Parenting can be hard, and co-parenting after divorce is no easier, but as long as parents keep the wellbeing of their children as their highest priority, it can be a situation that works for everyone. Parents in Texas may benefit from the following advice when working out their co-parenting plans.

Most importantly, experts advise parents to refrain from criticizing or speaking badly of the other parent. Children will internalize this criticism because they understand that they are part of both parents. If a parent needs to vent, they should do so to friends and not to the children. Co-parenting will go much more smoothly if both parents are cooperative and respectful towards each other. Children benefit from a continuous and loving relationship with both parents, and the parenting plan should take this into consideration.

Young children tend to do best with shorter, more frequent transitions such as the 2-2-3 plan where they spend two days with mom, two days with dad, three days with mom and then switch. Older children, especially teens who often have their own phones, may do better with alternating weeks with each parent. Older children will also want to have a say in the custody arrangement as they often have extracurricular activities and relationships with friends outside of the family that they want to preserve.

There are a lot of different aspects that need to be considered when devising an effective parenting plan. Parents who are trying to work out the details of child custody may benefit from the advice of a lawyer who has experience dealing with family law issues. A lawyer may be able to help develop an appropriate parenting plan that works to benefit everyone.