Divorced couples' co-parenting relationships can improve, MU researcher says

Published: Thursday, Aug. 16 2012 1:46 p.m. MDT

Our take: Divorce not only creates a difficult situation for children, but also for ex-spouses. When a marriage was tumultuous, many assume co-parenting after a divorce will be filled with fighting and anger. However, when parents turn their focus onto the needs of the children, an amicable relationship can be built, which is better for the children involved.

"To me, it's almost as if the parents in the bad-to-better relationships matured," Coleman said. "Mostly, it's because the parents began focusing on their children. The parents saw how upset their arguments made their kids, so they decided to put their differences aside and focus on what was best for the children."

The women in amicable relationships reported that their ex-partners were responsible parents and that money was not a source of conflict. In addition, the women said they communicated with their ex-partners frequently and in multiple ways, via text, phone and email. Cordial parents also dealt with differences in parenting styles more efficiently by communicating issues that arose. In addition, the women who had better relationships with their former spouses did not try to limit their children's interaction with their fathers and, instead, found ways to conveniently transition the children between two homes.

Read more about Co-parenting on Science Codex.

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