How To Co-Manage Your Child’s Developmental Journey With Your Ex
In today’s society, divorce, uncoupling (both conscious and unconscious), splitting up, etc., is all too common. In fact, over 50% of marriages end in divorce. For those with children who have extra developmental needs, unfortunately, that number is higher. Couples with children who need extra care in one way or another face added stress on their relationship. Add that stress to other relational issues and you have a recipe for disaster. Walking through your child’s developmental journey with your Ex can prove to be a very frustrating exercise, but it doesn’t have to be.
No matter how well, or not so well, the relationship ended, there is still a child or children who need both parents to come together for their well being. This is especially true for those who receive individualized services in school. What individualized learning and social-emotional supports means varies by each child. Knowing what services they are receiving and why, along with understanding how the progress is going and what to do next is the responsibility of both parents. Although, in a situation of couples that are no longer, one parent usually feels left out.
Uniting Around Your Child’s Developmental Journey With Your Ex
Unless you are lucky, chances are there was little you agreed on when emotions ran high and legal counsel was involved. But that is in the past. You and your Ex need to come to terms with the fact that you both belong to a child that needs both of your help when it comes to their developmental journey and meaningful progress.
No matter what communication issues existed in the past, there are some ways to manage your interactions better in the future. Here are some helpful tips to make the most of discussions about your child with your Ex about your child’s developmental journey more effective:
Set The Agenda Ahead Of Time – If your conversations with your Ex tend to derail easily, put the list of items you want to discuss in writing (email or text) and mutually agree on them before the conversation starts. This keeps both parties equally informed of what they will be talking about and formulates a beginning and end of the discussion. Try to also agree on a timeframe for how long the conversation will be, especially if communication is yet to be agreeably restored to friendly terms.
Stay Focused On The Issue – It’s easy in a tense relationship to blow up and bring up old issues when the current one triggers bad feelings. It will be hard, but don’t do it. If your relationship with your Ex is tenuous at best, agree ahead of time that your child’s education issues will be the only thing discussed or the conversation needs to end until it can resume with civility. Be the one to cut the conversation short before you open up your mouth and say something you’ll regret later.
Keep Record Of What Was Discussed And Agreed Upon – You don’t have to be sneaky about it. Just record in an email what you talked about it and then what agreements were made around your child’s developmental journey and ask your Ex to reply with whether or not the notes are accurate. Also, put in the same email what still needs to be resolved and what steps either or both of you need to take to get it resolved.
Outstanding agenda items will likely be your current agenda items for your next conversation. Keeping this recordkeeping transparent will go a long way in avoiding emotional conflict and mutual feelings of being “left out” of your child’s developmental journey.
Give Them The Option To Participate Or Not – Ask your Ex how they envision participating in the developmental journey with you and your child. Chances are they’d be more apt to participate if they felt welcomed to and on their terms. No one likes to be told what they are going to do, especially when it involves their child from a party they are not on good terms with. This may help alleviate tension between the two of you and take some weight off the parent that is doing most of the heavy lifting with in-home parenting. Regardless of outcome, the invitation was there to be accepted or not. From here, you will know what their participation level will or will not be.
Record Your Child’s Developmental Journey For Everyone Involved
The very best thing you can do to keep everyone in the loop and on the same page, including your Ex, is to keep all records and all notes on conversations in one place. But how do you do that? There is finally a solution. eCare Vault solves the problem of keeping everyone informed, participating in your child’s developmental journey, and collaborating on behalf of your child in a way that makes sense.
What if you could scan and save all reports, notes, pictures and progress notes in one cloud-based application for your Ex to not only see but comment on? What if your Ex could ask questions directly to your child’s teacher or developmental specialists? It’s not only possible, it’s a reality. Find out more about eCare Vault today and get off the hamster wheel of arguments with your Ex and back on track to intentionally co-parenting on the childhood developmental journey without pain.