A simple way to think about co-parenting

(This blog post was created together with Louisa Whitney. She is a family mediator from LKW Family Mediation who set up her own family mediation practice in 2013. She brings together separating couples to help them talk about what’s important to them so they can find a resolution tailor-made to their family. She also supervises and trains other mediators and runs training courses for all professionals who work with those going through a separation. She is passionate about giving parents the tools to minimise the effects of their separation on their children.)

Parenting after separation can feel very busy. You may find yourself carrying more responsibility for your child, whilst learning to navigate the co-parenting relationship.

Louisa and I put our heads together to hopefully help you simplify things a bit, let go of things that are not essential and make more space for what is important for you. In the video below we talk about:

  • Four common influences on co-parents. As you listen to those four common influences we invite to reflect on what is like for you. Are you comfortable with how things are or do you feel it could be better?

  • A way to come back to the present moment and focus on what your child needs from you right now

  • What help is available if you’re finding co-parenting challenging

Use this timeline if you want to come back to the specific part of the recording:

0:00 Introductions

3:00 Co-parenting foundation

4:35 Why is it important to know the common sources of pressure for co-parents?

6:20 Four common influences on co-parents that may be taking up your time and headspace, when you could be present with your children:

  • 6:20 Your relationship with your own parents

  • 9:30 Your relationship with the other parent

  • 13:40 Your family and friends

  • 16:30 What you see and hear in the media

21:00 A way to come back to the present moment and focus on what your child needs from you right now:

  • 24:10 Your commitment to being secure base for your child

  • 25:40 Supporting your child’s exploration

  • 27:00 Meeting your child’s need for comfort

  • 28:00 Support for you

30:30 Translating the theory into day-to-day parenting:

  • 0:40 How can I be the secure base for my child?

  • 34:20 Taking stock of your co-parenting resources

  • 37:20 How can I support the other parent to be the secure base?

  • 42:40 Friends and family – your village

  • 45:20 Filtering the messages that come from media

46:40 What help is available if you’re finding co-parenting challenging: