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Cantafio Hammond
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Divorce and Back-to-School Challenges

With school back in session, children and parents throughout the Denver area may still be adjusting to the many changes a new school year brings. For those parents who recently split from a spouse or went through a divorce, these types of changes are likely to be especially pronounced and include adjustments in how a parent must communicate and interact with an ex.

Even though you no longer want to be with or married to your ex, you must find a way to parent together. It's important, therefore, that you and your ex find a way to effectively communicate and get on the same page to help your child adjust and cope during this time of great transition.

Transitioning to a co-parenting relationship can be challenging and, at times, it may be difficult for you and an ex to come to a consensus about both big and small issues. Regardless of the small details, it's important to keep your attention and focus on the big picture and to never lose sight of what really matters -your child and his or her wellbeing.

Little Details:

  • Determine who will serve as the primary contact for school-related administrative tasks.
  • Ensure your child's school and teacher has both parents' contact information.
  • Make sure that you and an ex have online information for tracking assignments and grades and communicating with teachers.
  • Set up a shared online calendar to record and track important dates and information.
  • Establish quarterly co-parenting meetings to discuss your child's successes, events and needs.
  • Conduct regular check-ins with your ex to informally talk about what's happening with your child at school.

Big Picture:

  • Eliminate drama and work to provide a safe, stable and supportive environment where your child can focus, learn and grow.
  • Show up to school events, even if it's not your day or weekend with a child.
  • Know when to ask for help and reach out to a professional counselor if you know or suspect that your child is struggling emotionally, mentally or academically.

As you work to move beyond old patterns of interacting and establish a new and healthier co-parenting relationship, you and your ex may have some setbacks. You both, however, owe it to your child to persevere and commit to making a co-parenting relationship work.

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