Parenting after divorce is not easy. And it can be even more difficult when you and your ex-spouse cannot agree or get along.
Consistent conflict can negatively impact the whole family in the long run – not just the relationship between parents. In these cases, parents have several options to protect their family, with one being a parallel parenting arrangement.
How does parallel parenting work?
In any Arizona custody arrangement, parents must ensure they:
- Maintain stability and consistency in their child’s life;
- Meet their child’s needs; and
- Protect their child’s best interests.
With a parallel parenting arrangement, parents do all of this with limited interaction with each other. Essentially, divorced parents continue to co-parent, but they purposefully disengage from each other and maintain little to no contact.
This arrangement can be beneficial for many families since it can significantly reduce the chance of conflict between parents, and therefore the weight of stress on the entire family post-divorce.
What do you need to parallel parent?
Parallel parenting is a possible solution for parents who face high conflict after their divorce. However, this type of parenting arrangement requires careful thought and planning beforehand to ensure the arrangement works effectively. For example:
- With less communication and interaction, parents must establish a detailed parenting plan they both must follow;
- Parents should establish strict boundaries and rules regarding limited communication. For example, some parents find it reduces the chance of conflict even more if they restrict communication to text messages or emails; and
- Create a proactive plan to manage disputes, should they arise.
You might not get along well with your ex-spouse, but to make parallel parenting work, there is one thing you both must agree on: you will both put your children first. That is the most important aspect of any parenting arrangement.