Article Submitted by: Jennifer Call

The Added Anxiety Of Shared Parenting

It doesn’t take long to realize how children change your life. For one thing, the endless worry that comes with parenting starts on day one.  Or rather, night one when, as a new parent, you sit up listening intently to be sure your baby is breathing. From the most basic of concerns, parenting issues expand as your child starts to roll over and then walks into a world of unknowns and uncontrollables. Issues including financial stability for your child, plus keeping them safe, happy and healthy are enough to keep you awake at night, especially when as coparents you can’t always be with them.


On Your Own, But Not Alone

The statistics tell you the added anxiety you feel about your kids due to the fact you aren’t always with them is a theme among those raising their kids in separate homes. With nearly 50% of marriages ending in divorce and the statistics rising for second and third marriages, you can be sure there are plenty of parents in your situation. And no matter how much, or little you have your kids with you at home, the worries are similar, if amplified, due to circumstance.


What’s On Your Worried Mind?

Are your children healthy? Are they happy in school? Are your teens experimenting with drugs? Will they be successful in their careers? Parenting concerns are endless and some issues are exceptionally hard for you to always know about or control. How much time your child is spending online and who they’re communicating with is not something you can oversee when you aren’t always seeing your kids. All of these concerns make it vitally important you are on the same page as your co-parent when it comes to parenting styles.


1.Keep the Communication Going

However you feel about your ex, creating a co-parenting relationship is essential, as you need to coordinate schedules, agree on household rules and routines, and talk about what’s happening with your kids. Perhaps one of you has learned your child is being bullied at school, is fretting about doing well on a test or wants to drop out of a sport. Sharing your knowledge and experiences helps your child, not only because you know what is going on, but it reassures them that their parents are getting along. Knowing parents can put aside their differences for them helps your child immensely and also projects healthy behavior they will mirror in their own relationships.


2.Talk to Your Kids About Everything

When children are struggling, they often clam up and keep their situation or depression to themselves. It is a good habit to ask your children about their day as well as the things that concern you, giving them the opportunity to share what’s on their mind; things they wouldn’t tell you if you hadn’t asked. If you know something about your son or daughter from your ex and don’t want to breach a trust, keeping an open dialogue is always a good method for finding ways to help them.


3.Trust Your Instincts 

All the tips on how to raise your children will not make their childhood perfect and won’t prepare you for how to handle everything. Sleepless night spent worrying about your kids is part of the parenting package in any living arrangement. Trust that you know your children. When you are worried about something or sense they might be feeling ill or acting out of character, don’t hesitate to look into it. After all, knowledge is power, especially when it comes to helping your kids.

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