Last week, Big Bang actress Mayim Bialik released a YouTube video simply titled “Divorce.” In the video, the mother of two young boys “addresses what life is really like in a post-divorce world,” and how she manages co-parenting with her ex-husband Michael Stone.
So, what does Bialik, who is also a neuroscientist, recommend for successful co-parenting after divorce? She lays her plan out in three steps:
Do things together
Bialik and her ex actually continue to spend holidays together with their children. She strives to get the family all “under one roof.” They also attend services together at their synagogue. She admits that this may not be the ideal scenario, but that having the family together is very important to her. This certainly may not be easy for all divorced families. If the animosity is high, this type of situation will not work. Evaluate your situation, your emotions and the best interests of your children before you attempt this type of arrangement.
Continue to be a part of each other’s families
Bialik maintains relationships with her ex’s parents and other family members for the sake of her children, according to the actress. She states that divorce is “not the end of a family” but an end to a nuclear family and the end of a family living in the same house. Again, evaluate your personal situation. Your ex’s family may not be as receptive to continuing a relationship with you. Conversely, you may have had a strained relationship with your former in-laws and are relieved to not have to interact with them any longer. Of course, if they are good for your kids, don’t deprive your children a relationship with your ex’s family.
Try to model good behavior
Bialik indicates that there is no “trash talking” about the kids’ other parent and this is good advice for anyone going through a separation or divorce. The last thing any couple wants to do is put the children in the middle of their adult problems. Talking badly to your children about their other parent will only lead to their feeling hurt, alone and scared and can cause strained relationships between your children and your ex. Instead, Bialik says, she and her ex-partner “have set the precedent to sustain a positive flow of conversation when discussing one another.”
Remember, even the most positive and committed parents who have gone through a divorce will have moments where tempers flare and disagreements occur. This is completely natural. Plan for these inevitable disagreements by having a sound parenting time plan in writing so there is little room for interpretation. Strive to have positive communications regarding the children. Always remember that co-parenting is not about you or your ex, but about your children, their happiness and your providing them with long-term stability.
If you and your ex are interested in learning more about co-parenting and need advice or guidance on preparing a workable parenting plan, please contact us today to speak with one of our qualified attorneys experienced in custody and parenting time here in New Jersey.