By Nic Baird
Despite announcing their split in March, actress Jennie Garth and actor Peter Facinelli came together Saturday to support their daughter at a soccer game, People reports. After 11 years of marriage, they could still cheer together for their 6-year-old daughter Fiona. The former couple were joined by their other daughters, Luca, 15, and Lola, 9. Both have said the other is a great parent. “Co-parenting takes two great parents to put their differences aside and focus on the children,” Facinelli, the former Twilight star, said last month.
How do you remain civil post-divorce for the sake of your children?
“Monkey see, monkey do” is the ancient mantra for child rearing. If you want to protect your children from painful endings to their relationships, it’s crucial you put your best foot forward. Here are some tips:
1. Never show children aggression towards your ex: Regardless of how badly your partner messed up, there’s no reason your children should be further victims of the situation. Never show hostility or bitterness towards their other parent. If they have two parents at each others’ throats, then what was the point of the divorce? You’re setting them up to think that this broken family is the model for their future.
2. Maintain parenting partnership: Your kids will understand that family is forever, and parents have to prioritize their children, only if you keep a united front with your ex. This means that you discuss parenting issues together, and always bring back the same ruling to your child. If there are different rules home to home, favouritism and confusion will plague your family. It’s important your kids have both parents active in their life. Don’t try and push your ex away from their children.
3. Discuss emotional subjects in private: Emotions are irrational, and your feelings can spill out within earshot of your offspring if you’re not careful. Make sure you avoid topics that can trigger confrontation when your children are around. Maybe these subjects do warrant discussion with your ex, but make sure you know the right time and place. Turning up the radio is not a solution.
How have you accomodated your children in your divorce? Share your experiences below!