It is difficult when a child has parents who are no longer married or no longer living together. Parents often have many disagreements as they try to raise their children between two different homes. Some parents do not like one another at all anymore and are unable to communicate well with each other. You must do your part to make sure you do not alienate your child from their other parent.
Cooperate with all agreed upon visitation schedules. If the court has ordered a particular visitation schedule, you must stick with that schedule. Even if you have an agreement in writing that has not been court ordered, you should maintain the agreed upon visitation calendar. Children need consistency and so you cannot cancel visits or make changes at the last minute. You must do all you can to make certain that your child can see their other parent on a frequent basis.
Do not hinder your child from talking to their mother or father on the telephone. When your ex calls to talk to your child, allow them to do so whenever possible. Allow your child to call their other parent when they ask you to do so. Consider having a calling card or wireless phone service that your child can use when they need to talk to their non-custodial parent.
Invite your ex spouse or partner to attend special events and extracurricular activities to see your child. Keep him or her informed about special occasions at your child’s school, church or other locations. Provide your child’s non-custodial parent with a schedule of your child’s sporting events and other extracurricular activities so that he or she can attend whenever possible.
Never tell your child about the personal conflicts you are having with your ex spouse. They do not need to know what the two of you fight about. You should not tell them about the fights you have had or the disagreements you are having. Your child does not need to be caught in the middle. If your child is caught in the middle, he or she is more likely to feel as if they must take sides.
Do not speak in a negative manner about your child’s other parent. If you make your child fee as if their mother or father is not such a nice person, it can result in alienating the child from that parent. Your child might begin to feel as if they must be loyal to you by becoming angry with the other parent. Even if you think your ex is the most rotten person you know, you cannot express these feelings to your child.
You should go so far as to try to say some positive things to your child about their non-custodial parent. It is important to your child to have a strong relationship with both parents. Help him or her to see the positive attributes of the parent that they do not see as often. Point out the things that your child’s other parent does right instead of pointing out the things they do wrong.
It is your responsibility to make certain that your child feels secure enough in their relationship with you to develop a good relationship with their other parent. Never make your child feel guilty for enjoying the time they spend with your ex spouse or partner. Do not make your child think that they are being hurtful to you because they love and respect their other parent.
You must do your part to make certain that you are not alienating your child from their other parent. Do not be responsible for your child having a poor relationship with his or her dad (or mom).