12 Quick Co-Parenting Tips for Single Women
by Calvin Smith
1. Treat your child's father with respect. If you ever feel wronged, two wrongs don't make a right. Find a way to talk it out to get an understanding. Even if you need to go see a counselor. (If you need a counselor call (405)748-0091 to schedule an appointment with Okparents)
2. Let your ex see his children and allow him to be involved with them.
3. Don't use the law to belittle the father.
4. When there is a whirlwind of emotions, remember...
to practice approaching child care from an equal position. Looking for ways to validate emotions like anger or confronting your fears can lead to imbalanced perceptions that can effect your decision making in that process. Try to orient yourself around being fair minded about sharing power and control in the raising of your children instead of giving into temptations like playing the victim role to gain sympathy from others in order to overpower him. You are not fighting a ghost. You are engaging a person that you used to love or have some feelings for him at one time. Try to remember that as you interact with him. Winning the battle is not always the same as winning the war. My best thoughts are not to let your feelings get in the way of understanding the matter at hand. Hateful doesn't look good on anybody and rarely gains sympathy or solves problems.
5. Remember that just like you needed to learn how to be a mother, he needs to have room to learn to be a father.
6. Learn to be polite and respectful to that man when you're in his presence and when you're not in his presence- No man likes to be embarrassed by rank/hood/base actions. The more pungent you are, the less people want to be around your odor.
7. Learn to work together. Stop trying to enslave/oppress him with obligations and start trying to find a way to develop the things you do have in him by finding common ground.
8. Avoid the temptation to become jealous at his success. Greed and vindictiveness can really exhaust your own personal energy as well as make you difficult to relate too if you ever decided to date again. Don't be fixated on his success. Create your own. Yes...that means..Get your own job instead of trying to make all of his earnings your extra paycheck. The grief, expense, time, energy, and money isn't worth the effort. Kindness and supportiveness goes further than vindictiveness in the natural flow of things.
9. Start informing your ex of things and instead of letting him play catch up.
10. Make accommodations for the man's situation instead always demanding things from a one sided slant.
11. Meet your obligations to the man instead of finding ways or reasons for you to get a pass.
12. Stop trying to get him to walk the chalk line but you never want to hand over the chalk..Give the man a chance to make his mistakes, learn from them, and try again. Whether man or woman, there is a learning curb towards becoming the skilled parent.
For Christian Ministry & Counseling Services:
Calvin L Smith, MA, LPC
3000 United Founders Blvd, 225D
Oklahoma City, OK 73112