Research indicates and most parents would likely concur, that children do best when they have a routine. This is often especially true when it comes to young children who tend to behave better and thrive when they know what to expect and what is expected of them.
When parents divorce and share custody of a child, there are bound to be many changes to which everyone must adjust. For a child, being shuttled between homes and sleeping in different beds can be a big and difficult enough adjustment. Add in differences or inconsistencies in how parents choose to parent with regard to schedules, homework and discipline and numerous problems are likely to arise for both a child and his or her parents.
Regardless of how unhappy a marriage was or how messy a divorce became, co-parents must always do their best to keep the attention and focus on a shared child’s needs and wellbeing. A major part of helping a child cope with divorce, as well as all of the other challenging situations that tend to accompany the growing-up process, is to provide consistency.
It’s exceedingly important, therefore, that divorced parents make genuine attempts to get on the same page when it comes to things like house rules, bedtimes, general routines and discipline tactics. Unfortunately, some exes may argue and ultimately disagree about these types of matters. In cases where exes simply aren’t able to come to a consensus about how to approach these matters, unless a child’s safety or general welfare is in jeopardy, it’s often best to simply let it go.
Parents who have serious questions or concerns about a co-parent’s actions should contact an attorney. In some cases, it may be appropriate to intervene legally and take action to modify an existing child custody agreement.
Source: Huffington Post, “Consistent Coparenting Eases Life for Children After Divorce,” Rosalind Sedacca, Feb. 29, 2016