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Co-Parenting with your Ex

Guest article | 09 February 2012

Stock Photo

Whether you are divorced or were in a de-facto relationship

you probably don't want to maintain a relationship with your ex, especially if things didn't end on good terms. Sadly continuing cordiality is often essential for many ex couples when children are involved.

The first thing to remember is, you are not the only ones who need to make this type of situation work. Thousands of men and women are in your shoes. Even if they are now in a committed relationship, and your new partner is already scouring jewellers for a ring, civility with your ex is still essential for the kids' sake.

How do you make joint custody work though?

Focus on the children - They will be the most affected by your interaction. Instead of thinking about yourself, or even his needs, focus on your child’s happiness and security. They come first.

Separate feelings and actions - This often means an impossible task for many: putting your own feelings aside to work co-operatively. Hurt and resentment between an ex couple is always going to linger, and it will be difficult to put those feelings aside.

To deal with it:

Get your feelings out - Vent to a close friend or even the family pet. Just make sure your children are out of earshot. Negative opinions about your ex will make the child feel stuck in the middle and like they have to choose a side.

Communication - Keep an open dialogue with your ex. It isn't necessary to meet your ex in person. Speak over the phone, exchange texts and emails, just keep it conflict free. Don't dig at one another and above all listen.

Topic - Keep the conversation about the children as much as possible. This will allow you to maintain a cordial partnership that is focused and conflict free.

Communication breakdown - Remember, if a child knows communication has broken down between you, they can use this to their own advantage when they want something. If it happens, try not to let on, and if the children relay a message, double check the facts with your ex first. This will cause less stress in the long term.







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What does it mean to be a single mum?Of course, the

kids

are the most important thing in a single mum's life. Kids are the focus and always have been. But along with the children, there are other matters that can confuse a single mum's life.

Centrelink

plays a big part of a single mother's life, mainly because this is where a large percentage of single mums get their finances from. Centrelink are the source from where the

single mother pension

, or as it is otherwise known, the single parent payment comes from. The single mother pension is a subsistence amount, but just the same, it is money to live on, and so it is important, no matter if it is called single parent payment, single mother pension or whatever Centrelink welfare classes it at the time

Often, single mums come out of a

divorce

or defacto relationship only to find that their troubles have just begun, and find that their first step leads them towards Family Law - it's time to engage a lawyer.
There are more than just Centrelink finance problems to worry about, as mentioned before, but also

child custody

issues. Child custody is something that hits right at the heart of

single mums

. If a single mother's ex husband or ex partner has been a domestic violence perpetrator, the mum may be greatly worried about child custody. They worry that their kids won't be safe with their spouse, who has already proven to be abusive because they caused

domestic violence

, which resulted in a divorce or separation.

Even so,

Family Court

will often still order a form of child custody named

Shared Parenting

. Shared Parenting is a form of child custody division of time or parental responsibility between the parents. Mother's often look for a good divorce lawyer to try to avoid share parenting with an abusive ex-spouse after divorce, however in many cases Shared Parenting is still the outcome after the divorce, no matter how good the divorce lawyers have been. They will often settle for visitation at a contact centre or access centre where fathers or mothers are supervised during child custody access.

Please remember the bigger font words,because we will use it often in our website.