Virginia residents might be tempted to go no-contact with their ex after a divorce. Parents don’t have that option though. They’re expected to communicate with their ex, regardless of how difficult it might be.
There are ways to make co-parenting easier. Creating a co-parenting plan can make it easier to work with your ex-spouse as you raise your children.
What is a co-parenting plan
A co-parenting plan is a document that outlines how you and your ex will work together to raise your children. It will address things like custody and visitation and how you handle things like punishments and extracurricular activities.
The co-parenting plan will be submitted with the final divorce papers. Co-parenting plans are living documents, meaning you and your ex can change them as long as you mutually agree.
What to put in your co-parenting plan
You can put anything in your co-parenting plan that you want. Some parents outline who is responsible for individual tasks. For example, mom might be in charge of drop off, but dad might be responsible for pick up.
Parents should also address big concerns in the co-parenting plan. You may outline how to handle decisions regarding your children’s education, screen time, and religious influences. Some parents might create rules for introducing their children to new partners or relationships when the time comes – as much as they might not want to discuss it.
Odds are the plan will have to change as your children grow up and their needs change. It’s important to create a detailed plan and have frequent discussions to ensure the plan is working.
Creating boundaries in the co-parenting plan
Both parents must be committed to following the plan they agreed upon. Parents with a co-parenting plan will find they argue less with their ex-spouse and can easily avoid conflict.
Co-parenting plans might not work if one or both parents are not following the plan. And a co-parenting plan is not a replacement for communication. The co-parenting plan is to make communicating with an ex easier for the benefit of the children.