Life after divorce is filled with various changes. Not only do couples have to learn how to live on their own, but many feel as if they are completely starting over. Though spouses may be adjusting to doing things on their own, parenting does not normally fall under this same category. Parenting after finalizing a divorce is not meant to be done alone. In most cases, judges rule in favor of joint custody in order to keep both parents in the child’s life. Though co-parenting can make things easier for both spouses, it does require adjustments from both parents.
There are four different types of parenting styles. Often times people do not realize which parenting style they use until they are parenting primarily alone. Understanding and recognizing your parenting style versus your ex-spouse’s is important in learning how to adjust the ways in which you parent after your divorce.
- Authoritarian: This style of parenting puts all of the power into the hands of the parents while giving none to the children. Those who use authoritarian parenting are often strict with discipline and communication is primarily one-sided.
- Permissive: Permissive parents take on a role that is similar to friendship. Though they offer some guidance, these parents allow their children to make many decisions for themselves.
- Uninvolved: This parenting style does not involve much guidance or “parenting”. These children have complete autonomy and make their own decisions.
- Authoritative: This style of parenting is known as the happy medium. Parents who utilize this form have a balance between strict discipline and nurturing guidance.
While identifying you and your ex’s parenting techniques can be helpful with co-parenting, there are a variety of other ways in which co-parenting can run smoothly.
- It is important to have uniformity across households. Though your parenting styles may be different, consistency is beneficial in a child’s life. Having the same rules in both houses eliminates many problems regarding what is expected of the child and how you both wish to raise him/her.
- Agreeing on positive discussion is crucial. Neither spouse should express their negative personal feelings for their ex. This can force children to feel divided between both parents and cause a child to adopt one parent’s opinion of the other.
- Stay in contact with your ex-spouse. Though there may be tension between you two, it is important to communicate with your child’s other parent to remain fully knowledgeable about their lives. This communication does not necessarily have to be done in person. Many divorced couples rely on phone calls and emails. The form of communication is less important than the overall need to talk.
Contact an Illinois Parenting Agreement Attorney
Co-parenting is a skill that must be learned after the logistics of a divorce are settled. Written parenting plans are an Illinois requirement for those who are granted joint custody. It is important to have an experienced attorney to help make these decisions concrete in the eyes of the court. Shaw Family Law, P.C. has experience in all aspects of the divorce process. Contact our Kane County divorce attorneys for a free consultation at 630-584-5550.