When married parents in Ohio are constantly fighting, this can have a negative affect on their child’s well-being. For these families, sometimes divorce is a good option. However, parents going through a divorce will remain that — parents — even after the final divorce decree is signed. This means that they remain tied to one another through their child, who they must continue to raise together at least to some extent.
Whether parents share joint custody, or whether one parent has custody and the other parent has visitation with the child, co-parenting may be a way for them to raise their child in a healthy manner. Co-parenting is simply the term used when parents cooperate and communicate regularly to raise their child together, even though they are not married anymore. They will make compromises to further the best interests of their child.
When parents co-parent, they need to be unified and consistent. This avoids confusion on behalf of the child, who may feel like there are different rules at different houses, and it also helps parents understand what is going on with their child when their child is not in their care. Co-parenting also means that parents will attend special events in their child’s life together, and they will refrain from disparaging their ex-spouse in front of their child. This requires a certain amount of cooperation and civility.
Some parents share joint legal custody, in which they make major life decisions on the part of their child together. Some parents share joint physical custody, in which the child spends roughly half of his or her time with each parent. And, some parents enjoy sole physical custody, while the other parent has visitation with the child. Co-parenting can work in any of these child custody situations, if the parents make the effort to put the child’s needs first. It may not always be easy, but if parents can put their past behind them and focus on their child, it can help their child adjust to the divorce in a healthy manner while retaining a meaningful relationship with both parents.