• Home
  • Managing Conflict For Divorcing Couples With Kids: Key Things To Remember
Managing Conflict For Divorcing Couples With Kids: Key Things To Remember

Managing Conflict For Divorcing Couples With Kids: Key Things To Remember

June 21st, 2023

Learning how to manage conflict is crucial for divorcing couples, particularly when children are involved as well. Going through a divorce can be overwhelming and emotionally challenging for everyone in the family. Therefore, if you want to ensure a healthy and stable environment for your kids, there are a few important considerations that you will need to make. They will help you navigate this difficult phase of your life with greater understanding, empathy, and cooperation. Below we have compiled a list of essential strategies, that you may want to keep in mind when it comes to managing conflict and prioritising your children’s wellbeing during a separation or divorce.

Minimise Exposure To Conflict

The first key thing to remember is that you will need to try to minimise exposure to conflict as much as possible. This is because witnessing parental disagreements and conflicts can cause significant emotional distress and confusion for children during an already challenging time. Consequently, it’s best for parents to handle disputes privately away from their children’s presence. For example, parents may want to agree to have discussions in a separate room or at a time when the kids aren’t around. As a result, this will demonstrate to kids that their parents can deal with disagreements in a mature and respectful way.

Focus On Your Children’s Best Interests

During divorce, it’s vital to prioritise your children’s wellbeing above disagreements or personal grievances. This means that you may need to put aside individual interests and work towards solutions that will be beneficial for your kids. It may be a good idea to consult legal aid solicitors, if you are struggling to come to a mutual agreement about child custody or child support. National Legal Service can provide you with help and support in situations which might not be as straightforward. Their legal aid solicitors can offer professional legal advice, ensuring that your children remain the top priority at all times.

Respect Each Other’s Parenting Styles

It’s normal for divorcing couples to have different parenting styles, so you may not agree with everything that your ex-spouse does. However, it’s crucial to respect these differences as much as possible to minimise conflict. For example, each parent may have their own approach to discipline, routines, and parenting decisions. Although these differences can create challenges, finding common ground and maintaining consistency for the children’s sake is essential. If one parent tends to be more strict and the other more lenient, it can be helpful to find a middle ground that allows both parents to feel comfortable while providing stability for the children.

Focus On Teamwork And Collaboration

Approaching co-parenting as a team effort can be a great way to foster collaboration and reduce conflict. While divorcing parents may have personal differences, focusing on shared goals and responsibilities helps create a cooperative and supportive environment. Working together will ensure that your children receive constant encouragement and love from both parents, despite the separation. There are various ways to demonstrate teamwork and collaboration, such as by attending important events together like parent-teacher meetings or other school functions or making collective decisions about significant milestones, such as graduations or birthdays.

Manage Personal Emotions

Divorce can evoke a range of intense emotions for both parents, so it’s important to know how to deal with them. It’s crucial to focus on looking after yourself and managing your personal emotions effectively. For example, you may want to take some time for self-reflection and engage in activities that promote personal wellbeing. Consider seeking individual therapy, as this can be beneficial in managing and processing emotions related to the divorce. Once you feel emotionally balanced and grounded, it will be easier to approach co-parenting with a clear mind and a more positive attitude.

Communicate Openly And Respectfully

Effective communication is the foundation for successful conflict management during divorce. Therefore, it’s important to establish open and respectful channels of communication between both parents. This may involve actively listening to each other’s concerns, being more patient, and refraining from interrupting or dismissing the other person’s perspective. Maintaining a respectful tone and approach will help you avoid escalating conflicts, enabling you to work towards finding mutually agreeable solutions. Make sure you set up regular meetings, where you can exchange key details about the children’s wellbeing, such as school activities or medical appointments.

Develop An Effective Co-Parenting Plan

Creating a comprehensive co-parenting plan will allow you to establish clear guidelines and expectations, reducing ambiguity and potential areas of conflict. This plan should make it easier to address practical aspects, such as custody arrangements, visitation schedules, holidays, and financial responsibilities. It’s essential to be proactive about finding solutions that work for both parents so that you can minimise misunderstandings and reduce the likelihood of conflicts arising in the future. Coming up with guidelines upfront ensures that you will have a shared understanding of your roles and responsibilities, which promotes stability and consistency.

Be Open To Compromise And Flexibility

Another key part of conflict management is a willingness to compromise when needed. Both parents should be open to finding common ground and adjusting their expectations to reach mutually agreeable solutions. Therefore, it’s crucial to recognise that compromise is often necessary for the sake of children’s wellbeing. For instance, if there is a change in the children’s schedules, parents can work together to find a solution, that accommodates everyone’s needs. Being open to alternative arrangements will help you foster a more positive co-parenting relationship, so make sure you demonstrate a willingness to accommodate reasonable requests.

Create New Traditions

While a divorce signifies a significant transition for both parents and children, it’s still paramount to foster a sense of unity. This may include acknowledging and celebrating milestones in this new chapter of life. Remember to commemorate important events together and create new traditions, that will result in positive memories for your children. For example, parents can establish new holiday traditions or special family rituals that reflect the unique dynamics of their post-divorce family. You may want to try different activities, such as taking annual vacations together, celebrating birthdays with joint gatherings, or having regular family game nights.

Laura Bartlett

Laura Bartlett

Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.