Growing up my parents divorced somewhere around the time I was 9 or 10, and it wasn’t unexpected for them to split up. Some people seem to fall in love but then find they are truly not meant to be together, it is called life and people do change, life changes, and there are so many factors that play into “life” that can make the dream you once had change completely. I spent every other weekend with my father growing up and that was the shared custody plan.
When I found myself with a four month old daughter and getting out of a relationship with someone I was not meant to be with (my daughter’s father) I knew in my heart I didn’t want my daughter to grow up with drama surrounding co-parenting. I will admit back when everything first happened I was filled with a lot of anger towards my ex and I am sure he had anger towards me as well. One thing we both swore was to raise our daughter together and focus on the important part of “us” … our child we planned to have together, Miss Ki. Ki has grown up to be such a well rounded, intelligent, happy child and at age 7 she will tell you what’s on her mind without a second thought.
I firmly believe my daughter is lucky because she has two parents who could overcome their differences and focus on their similarities in parenting. Although I do not always agree with the movies my ex watches with our daughter or how he handles his anger, I do know we agree on how to raise our daughter overall and that’s what matters! My daughter is in a 50/50 split custody situation where she spends a couple nights a week overnight with her Daddy and every other weekend with him. If a family event comes up, we work it out and share visitation around that particular event. It’s easy usually and it keeps the peace. Due to my ex and I co-parenting in a positive way our child has been able to grow up and be a happy little girl who knows she is loved as much as she would be if we were in a relationship living as a family together.
Now I am faced with co-parenting again, separation from my husband will happen this month and I find my stomach in huge KNOTS! I planned on spending the rest of my life with my husband, we had goals, we had dreams together and we thought things were not going to end up where they are today. Again, life happened and although we are simply separating to see where life takes us, we will be sharing our two sons. I am more nervous about sharing my boys than separating, why? Quite simply because I haven’t spent a night away from my boys ever, the most time I have spent away from them was maybe six hours when I attempted to work outside of the home as Verizon Wireless sales rep.
I do know that the co-parenting will be very similar to my daughter’s plan, as often as possible to allow for both parents to see their children, because that is what would be best for our sons.
All too often I see on the news or listen to friends or aquaintances discuss the drama between sharing their child or children and I cringe! Why do some people have to make sharing your children a battle of ownership or who is in charge? I mean the reality is the child you bore belongs to both you and your ex, who is to say one of you has a right over the child more than the other? This is not a material item we are talking about, it’s a human being who deserves to know and feel the love from both parents!
If you are co-parenting and have found yourself in drama, please try to do all you can to step back and see if the situation is causing unneccessary stress on your child. If your child feels stressed to favor one parent over the other they can grow to feel anger issues that no child should ever have to feel!
Please take a moment to read about Children First — Co-Parenting Through Separation and Divorce if you find yourself in a situation of sharing your child or children with an ex. Make a promise to yourself and your child today that you will work with their other parent to create a positive situation that will allow your child to flourish to their full potential.
Make it a Happy Day!