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What makes Shared Parenting Work?

  • sexysadie
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22 Sep 12 #357369 by sexysadie
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I agree with Elphie that it is rather the nature of the beast in the WV members tend to be people who are having trouble with shared parenting. However, Ruby started this thread as a way to collect good advice that could be used by others in the future. Hasn''t anyone got any good experiences?

Best wishes,
Sadie

  • BoysMum
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23 Sep 12 #357387 by BoysMum
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I have two older children ( in their late teens ) and me and their Dad have things worked out to a fine art.

The best advice I can give is
1) Try to remain friends
2) Respect each other
3) ALWAYS put the children first
4) NEVER speak badly about the other parent
5) Treat the other parent as you would wish to be treated
6) There is no point trying to score points against each other, kids are rather astute.
7) Remember your kids love both of you.

It takes an awful lot of effort but so worth it!! Our children know we BOTH support them, good and bad. They have two homes where they are equally loved. However, and the best part, we have never allowed them to play us against each other. They know that Mum and Dad talk and make decisions together. They know if they have done something wrong, I will be straight on the phone to their dad to discuss it. They live with me, so I will dish out any punishments that are needed, but I will have always discussed it with Dad beforehand. If they have asked for something expensive for Christmas, we have brought it as a joint gift. Money has never come into the equation. Dad has always paid the CSA rates, but has been more than happy to pay extra if it was ever needed. Equally, I have always managed on the maintenance and never abused his good nature. If an extra cropped up, we would often pay half each.

Now, as I say, they are in their late teens, we will reap the rewards. When they get engaged/married, we will both be involved in the arrangements. There will be no animosity having Mum and Dad on the top table at the wedding. Dad pops in for a coffee and a chat, we are best of friends now. One of my son''s is out with Dad tonight, the other is at home with me. As the years pass, it becomes so relaxed and the ''norm''. There is no competing for '' extra hours''. I never feel the need to call them, or worry about them when they are with their Dad. I trust him 100%

It''s not easy in the early days. Feelings are raw, emotions run high, and it is easy to loose sight of the most important thing. Your children.

I think it would be damn near impossible though, if you are not friends. I am lucky, we have built a great relationship as ''parents'' rather than a ''couple''.

The only thing that will get you to that point is determination and you have to stop thinking about yourself, and focus completely on your children.

I have 2 younger children by my second partner and you will see from my previous posts, I am living a nightmare with him re contact issues. That alone goes to show, it takes TWO. Unless both parties are completely committed to do the best for their children, it will not work. Its certainly achievable, I have done it :)

  • soulruler
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23 Sep 12 #357407 by soulruler
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Foseti

I don''t really think that the majority of posts are negative as pointed out since your post most people are on here for support because things are difficult to nigh on impossible.

Where people are civil then shared parenting works well to excellently (the children may not feel exactly the same).

But where one or two parties are acrimonious then for the children access to parents can become a recurrent nightmare.

What I think is positive about the posts here is that decent people are thinking hard how to make it easier for their children post split.

How to help the children with their emotional and financial needs, how to avoid getting into warring discussions with difficult or controlling ex-s, now to avoid making negative comments about new partners that sort of thing.

I did try to organise contact with his father for my eldest son, first thought of a contact centre but that was way to sterile and inappropriate due to his age - by that time 19, I then considered escorts for trips out using his direct care package (as he is disabled) but discussed that with social services and we both agreed that wouldn''t work (in any case oldest son did not want it AT ALL).

Sometimes shared parenting is a goal to acheive, sometimes it is something you want to acheive and sometimes it just doesn''t work. I also do not think that shared parenting is always in the best interest of the child, if the child is impacted very negatively by contact with one of the parents.

  • Mark100
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23 Sep 12 #357410 by Mark100
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Hi

That''s a really nice post. Even now I offer to talka nd go to mediation though and you are right that two need to amke the effort. I don''t know how to build bridges. I did tell CAFCASS - if this does not change when they are 13 or 14 they will tell us ''both'' to F### Off as to outsiders we are an embarrasment. I do make some mistakes - it''s so stressful and I know I am not as good a dad as I was on e year ago because of this but I am also sure I put them first and my life still revolves around them. I keep taking blows and keep rising above it, I think only occasionally showing the problem or stress to the kids.

Your situation is something to aspire to as that would be perfect for the kids.

Thanks x

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23 Sep 12 #357412 by rubytuesday
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sexysadie wrote:

Ruby started this thread as a way to collect good advice that could be used by others in the future. Hasn''t anyone got any good experiences?

Best wishes,
Sadie


Thanks Sadie, this was the exact intention of starting this thread, I wasn''t really looking for a debate on Shared Parenting :s

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23 Sep 12 #357413 by Mark100
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I was a culprit!

Read Boysmum''s Checklist!

  • loveourmum
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24 Sep 12 #357538 by loveourmum
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As a child of this whole sorry saga - my late mum''s way was to "never, ever to wash her dirty laundry in public!"

A lot to be said for the good old days when family business was famiy business!

Keeping a quiet silence on what went wrong out of the ear shot of us children was another of the ways of keeping us out of it!

Believe you me ignorance is bliss when you are a young child and have more than enough to cope with especially as each new stage of your life arrives!

Best wishes.

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