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Co-Parenting - How to Handle When Your Child Chooses the Other Parent

No matter what the situation may be, co-parenting can be a challenge. Whether you generally get along with your child’s other parent or not, there are always issues that arise and must be ironed out.

When your child chooses the other parent, it is easy to feel defeated and discouraged. Here are some things to remember when you are in this situation.

Don’t Blame Your Child

Growing up is filled with challenges. Even when a child is in a family with both natural parents, there are times when disagreements may arise. Try to remember your feelings as a child, and don’t blame your child for acting like one. You may not fully understand the struggles your child is facing, and it is wise not to jump to conclusions or judge them too harshly.

Don’t Blame Yourself

On the flipside, don’t blame yourself. When a child chooses the other parent, it hurts and you may be tempted to feel like the world’s worst parent.

You may begin to believe the accusations you have heard thrown at you. Keep your perspective, and choose to believe the truths you know about yourself. These truths are that you love your child and that you are doing your best as you parent them.

Learn What You Can

Although you should avoid blaming yourself, there is often a truth we can learn through a tough situation such as this. Do you feel that you may have been too harsh with your child?

Have you been running down your child’s other parent in front of your child, leading to them feeling sorry for the other parent?

Take care not to be overrun with guilt, but learn whatever you can in order to grow, and perhaps mend the broken relationship you currently have with your child.

Attempt to Co-Parent as Best as Possible

Although you may feel betrayed and probably want to blame your ex, you must continue to co-parent respectfully and in the most civil manner you possibly can. Remember that your ex is still a parent to your child, and try to see their side of the situation. Even if you cannot find any common ground, choose to be polite and courteous at the very least.

Love Unconditionally

Whether your child has chosen to live with their other parent, or simply sides with the other parent on every possible issue, continue to love your child unconditionally. Forgive every betrayal and keep your door open to your child.

Let them know that you will always be there for them, no matter what decisions they make or hurtful things they say to you. In this way, you are being a positive role model, as well as leaving the door open for a future relationship with your child.

Co-parenting is not easy, and it becomes especially complicated when your child has chosen the other parent over you. Although you might feel like you are being swallowed up in the pain of it all, don’t lose your footing.

Keep focused on these tips and handle yourself with grace and dignity. Let your child know you will be there for them when he or she chooses to return to you.

Co-Parenting - How to Handle When Your Child Chooses the Other Parent

Co-Parenting - How to Handle When Your Child Chooses the Other Parent

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