Like all good parents in Texas and beyond, you consider your children’s well-being when you make life changing decisions. If you’re one of many parents in the state who have recently filed for divorce, you no doubt understand that you have activated an entire decision-making process that will have a significant impact on your and your children’s future. Among the issues you’ll need to resolve to achieve a fair settlement are those pertaining to child custody.

As long as there are no extenuating issues in your case that would make your co-parent’s presence in your kids’ lives a detriment to their well-being, a shared custody arrangement might be the best option. Most family court judges believe that children typically fare best in divorce when they have ample opportunity to maintain active relationships with both parents. If your goal is to avoid high stress situations, you’ll want to consider ideas that may help you peacefully co-parent.

Kids take their cues from their parents

As you navigate divorce and lay the groundwork for a new family lifestyle, your children will undoubtedly pay close attention to the interactions between you and your ex. If they witness frequent parental conflict, they may feel stressed or worried that they are somehow to blame for the bad feelings between their parents.

You can help your kids come to terms with divorce by agreeing to set your past relationship problems aside in order to work as a team to create a peaceful co-parenting atmosphere. Child support issues, shared custody schedules and parenting styles are some of many issues that can cause stress between co-parents after divorce. The more you try to avoid confrontation, the better able to cope your children might be.

Clear communication and cooperation are keys to success

While you no longer wish to be married to the other parent, it is critical that you both respect the role each other has in your children’s lives. It’s best to avoid using them as messengers. It helps keep stress low if you agree to communicate in a calm, mature fashion to discuss and decide important issues concerning your kids.

If your ex is supposed to pick up the kids at a certain place and time but calls to request a schedule change, try to remember that your reaction to the situation will affect your children. If it becomes a habit or your ex is disregarding a court order, that’s a whole other issue. You can bring such matters to the court’s attention.

Accomplishing your ultimate goals

When you filed for divorce in a Texas court, you likely had a list of goals you were hoping to achieve. A goal most parents have in similar situations is to settle financial and child custody matters while trying to help children move on in life with as little disruption and stress as possible.

If you build a strong support network from the start, you increase your chances for success.