How do we best draw effective co-parenting strategy?

Monday, December 21st, 2020 00:00 |
Effective co-parenting strategy.

Hi Achokis. I have been in a relationship for the last five years. I got pregnant three years ago and gave birth to a bouncing baby boy who is now two years.

I was hopeful this relationship would end in marriage. My partner and I even moved in together though never had any dowry negotiations.

But the past few months have been tough and after trying hard, we have agreed it is not going to work.

We are now talking about co-parenting our son. How can we properly do this? 

Co-parenting is a new phenomenon to many, especially in this part of the world. Ideally, it is good for a child to be raised in a family where both parents are together.

But because of one reason or another, like in your case or in the case of a divorce, the next best thing to do is for the two people responsible for bringing the child into this world to agree to co-parent him/her.

So let us begin by commending both of you for that decision even though under difficult circumstance. 

Seek closure

To co-parent well, there needs to be good closure in the relationship. Failure to bring things to a good closure makes it difficult to have any agreement moving forward.

So often, people split and leave each other hurt and wounded. This can become messy in co-parenting as so often either you, the woman, will use the child to get even with your ex by denying him time to spend with his son or the man may refuse to honour his promise of child support to hit back. 

It is, therefore, important to bring proper closure to your relationship. Try seeing a counsellor, not just so that you can work out things between you, but so as to also help you heal as an individual even if you are not going to continue being together.

The dos and don’ts

In co-parenting your child, agree on the dos and don’ts. You must agree on when each of you gets to spend time with the child, where and how.

You may even agree that since the child is still a baby, he stays with you, but visit his dad from time to time. As the child grows, then you may need to allow the father to have him on certain weekends. 

Agree on how you want to discipline the child, for example what time the child should sleep, what they should watch and not watch on the screen, what they should eat or not eat and things like that.

Agree also on what privileges the child should have so that he does not get confused because of two sets of conflicting rules. 

Don’t bad-mouth each other to your child or use the child as a weapon or hostage in your fights.

Don’t use the child to fleece money out of the father or deny him the opportunity to spend time with him. The writers are marriage and relationship coaches,  [email protected]

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