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What pitfalls may I face while co-parenting digitally?

| Jul 20, 2020 | Child Custody |

The prevalence of smartphones and tablets have changed the way we all communicate, offering the ability to text anyone at any time, have easy video calls and more. For divorced parents, co-parenting using digital tools largely has become the norm, offering several advantages and yet some pitfalls too.

Why co-parenting digitally is beneficial

If you and your ex are new to co-parenting, you can take the following into consideration when co-parenting digitally:

  1. One of the largest advantages of using digital communication tools is allowing you to more frequently and easily communicate with your child’s co-parent.
  2. You also can easily share information about your child’s custody schedule, activities and expenses via co-parenting apps, making it easier to manage your child’s schedule and splitting costs between you and your ex.
  3. You can schedule video calls when your child is with the other parent to ease their anxiety and yours about spending time away from you.
  4. Some parents find that only communicating via text or through co-parenting apps, like Our Family Wizard, App Close, Talking Parents or Coparently, reduces the tension between them, leading to less conflict and fewer charged emotions that phone calls or in-person conversations bring.

Pitfalls of co-parenting

Yet, co-parenting digitally also comes with some disadvantages. Some of these have become clear in recent months, during stay-at-home orders and social distancing, when divorced parents only could communicate digitally.

  1. If you are only communicating by text with your child’s co-parent, you may have miscommunications with your child’s other parent. Texting doesn’t allow for the nuance of tone or emphasis, and you may interpret messages about your child in the wrong way.
  2. If you text too frequently, you can find yourself going beyond just communicating about your child and their schedule. You may end up getting into emotionally charged communications and have a hard time disengaging. That can add strain to your co-parenting relationship.
  3. If your ex and you disagree with how to handle continued social distancing measures for your child and yourselves, you may want to cut off your ex’s access to your child (except via communicating digitally). However, not following your child’s custody order exactly isn’t a good idea either.

Learning to co-parent well often takes time. You may make mistakes through communicating digitally. However, you always should keep in mind that working to communicate well and reduce conflict with your former spouse will be better for your co-parenting relationship and for your child. You may choose to consult with a Board-certified expert family law attorney in Dallas County, Collin County, or elsewhere in Texas on issues that may arise in regard to co-parenting disputes.

If you find your ex not following the custody order or limiting access to your child, you should consult an experienced board-certified family law expert attorney like C. Luke Gunnstaks. With the help of a good attorney, you can get your child custody issues resolved.

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