Some divorced parents in Connecticut may find co-parenting a challenge. However, parents should try to avoid letting their feelings toward one another interfere with the relationship the child builds with either of them. Children should feel free to talk about their lives at the other parents’ house, but they should not be put in the middle of things by being asked to carry messages back and forth. Parents should try to establish consistent rules in both households. This can be difficult, and in some cases, it may be best to aim for similar expectations.

Communication problems can lead to co-parenting problems. A visible calendar in both homes can serve as a reminder of the custody schedule for children and parents. There are also online tools that can help parents communicate and can save that communication in case they must enter mediation later. Children may ask about the divorce, and when they do, parents should try to be honest without blaming one another. If there is a chance of reconciliation, parents should still not raise this hope with their children. They should wait until it is certain.

Parents should also not involve their children in meeting significant others until the relationship is solid. Stepparents should not try to act as parents. When parents must attend the same event on the child’s behalf, they should avoid arguing.

Many parents may want to try to negotiate an agreement instead of going to family law court. However, even if their schedule for child custody and visitation must be determined by a judge in litigation, parents can still move ahead with a functional co-parenting relationship. They should try to avoid returning to court to work on minor problems. Bigger issues that mean a change in legal agreement, such as paying less in child support or relocation, usually require formal legal action.