Sharing children with a former spouse or partner can be a challenge for anyone. Virginia residents who must do this might be able to get into routines during the school year that eventually start to feel normal and manageable. Then all of a sudden the summer break period arrives and what was normal and reliable is out the window. This may turn a coparenting situation into a nightmare unless the parents are able to follow perhaps the golden rule of parenting together after a divorce: put the children first.

As explained by Parenting magazine, it can be all too easy for one parent to hurry to claim as their own a long-treasured family tradition during the summer. However, this approach can actually backfire by setting up a power struggle between the parents. It may feel hard at first but parents may do well to resist this urge and instead stop to consider what their children really need and want. If the other parent can actually provide that, allowing the opportunity for that to happen may be the right and best thing to do.

Taking this approach may allow each parent to develop new treasured traditions with their children. It may also reduce conflict between parents which is good for children as well.

This information is not intended to provide legal advice but is instead meant to remind divorced or separated parents in Virginia how to focus on their children’s needs first in order to not only survive summer breaks but to make them positive for everyone.