If you share children with your former spouse, your former spouse will likely be in your life until those children reach the age of majority. Typically, an Arkansas judge will want to see evidence that you can work with your child’s other parent as a condition of granting custody rights. Fortunately, there are some easy steps that you can take to develop a working relationship with someone you may not necessarily like.
Limit the topics of conversation
If you have a contentious relationship with your former spouse, it may be best to limit yourself to conversations that involve your child. For example, you might agree only to text your child’s other parent if your child is sick or got a bad grade on a test. Doing so minimizes the risk of your child witnessing an argument or being put in other stressful situations.
Put your ego aside
It’s possible that parenting time won’t be split equally in a divorce settlement. It’s also possible that you’ll need to pay child support even if you have custody of your son or daughter. While that may bother you, it’s important that you put your feelings aside for the sake of your child.
A parenting plan is meant to be a general framework as to your rights and responsibilities as a parent. However, if your child is sick, it might be a good idea to let them stay with your former partner for the weekend, even if doing so infringes on your parenting time. The same might be true if your child has a sports tournament, a major project due at school or some other event requiring full focus and attention.
While you are allowed to divorce your spouse, you cannot divorce yourself from your children. Therefore, taking whatever steps are necessary to be involved in their lives is critical. Even if you are denied custody rights, you may still be granted visitation rights or allowed to communicate with your kids regularly.