As you and your spouse decided to get divorced, it was with the knowledge that you were no longer getting along and had different approaches to raising your children. You may be looking forward to living with less contention in your life, but it’s still important that you and your spouse get along well enough to raise your children together in a positive manner.
You may be asking if it matters if coparents get along, and the simple answer is that it’s unclear. This doesn’t mean that coparents shouldn’t try to get along, but if they can compartmentalize their feelings then it shouldn’t matter as much if they get along with one another.
What matters most is that parents get to see their children
What matters most in cases of divorce, and what affects children’s outcomes most significantly, is how often parents see their children. Parents who had contact monthly or less often were found to have less knowledge about their kids in one study that looked at the cases of 400 divorced individuals, even when compared to parents who were involved in conflicts but who saw their children more often.
Compartmentalizing your feelings may help your children
After a divorce, it can be difficult to speak with your ex. It may bring up negative emotions or strain your relationships. However, if you can compartmentalize those feelings, then you may be able to create a positive atmosphere for your child, even though you don’t get along with your ex-spouse and coparent.
Sharing parenting responsibilities isn’t necessarily going to be easy. Higher-conflict, more disengaged coparents are less likely to know about their children or to be as actively involved. Both parents can help with this issue by trying to compartmentalize their personal feelings. They should put their children first, doing their part to minimize conflict or, at the very least, to shield their children from conflicts between themselves and the other coparent.
It might be difficult at first to do this, but positive coparenting relationships have more positive outcomes. Even if it requires sidelining your feelings, this could be the right path to take for your child’s health and wellness.