The word “co-parenting” is becoming more common, but what does it mean and is it truly obtainable?
Written by: Sara Kucsan, Esq.
Co-parenting is the sharing the duties of parenting. Mashonda Tifrere, Swizz Beatz’s ex-wife, wrote a book regarding how she learned to co-parent with Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz by blending their separate families into one large family. After reading Blend: The Secret to Co-parenting and Creating a Balanced Family, I absorbed four core pillars to blend effectively and co-parent: 1) communication; 2) empathy; 3) acceptance; and 4) focus.
“Hello, how are you?” – Blend: The Secrete to Co-parenting and Creating a Balanced Family, pg. 157
Effective communication between all of the co-parenting adults starts with ‘love, understanding, and patience.” Page 156. Mashonda discusses how she sent a simple text to Swizz, “Are you free to talk?” (page 80), which led to an open discussion about concerns and goals for their son. Mashonda advises her readers the importance of checking your tone of any speech, emails or texts, as the opening sentence can steer the course of an entire conversation.
Often times after a divorce, ex-spouses struggle to communicate with one another. This struggle usually trickles down to lack of communication with an ex-spouse’s new significant other. In Blend, Mashonda Tifrere utilizes every opportunity to remind her readers that open and effective communication can prevent misunderstandings and can provide realistic expectations. Mashonda Tifrere writes how, once she began to have open conversations with Alicia Keys, she was able to see that Alicia wanted similar things for her child and that Alicia would respect the parenting choices she and Swizz made. As the communication between the two women grew, it enabled the two families to have a more cohesive plan for the children.
Once a divorce is finalized, both parties have anger and animosity to some extent; however, with open communication regarding your feelings and your child(ren) feelings, that animosity will slowly begin to fade. Co-parenting will not be possible if the adults are unable to have valuable conversations and refrain from emotions dictating their actions.
Lyons & Associates focuses its practice on family law and family law related issues. If you or someone you know is interested in effectively co-parenting their blended family, then please call the skilled attorneys and mediators at Lyons & Associates, at 908-575-9777 or use the online contact form. The attorneys at Lyons & Associates, P.C. have substantial expertise zealously advocating for children’s best interests and mediation.