The year 2020 has been difficult, especially for blended families having to deal with health concerns, child custody challenges and distance learning needs because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The current health crisis is likely to stretch well into 2021, so what can you do if you feel you and your ex need to come to a better agreement on parenting your children amid this pandemic?
You and your ex may not see eye to eye on everything about how to avoid your child contracting COVID-19 or handle distance learning. One of you may avoid social interactions outside of your household as much as possible. One of you may work as an essential worker and have more contact with those infected with the virus. How do you better move forward when everyone is tired of social distancing, online learning and limited social interactions?
Here are some tips about establishing better coparenting in the coming months:
- Take time to communicate with your ex and see if you can come to an agreement on social distancing practices and the importance of maintaining handwashing and proper sanitation in the winter months. If not, revisit those with your child, so they understand what you expect in your home and when they are with your ex.
- Talk with your ex about receiving the coronavirus vaccine when it is available. If you share joint decision making, you will have to decide if your child will receive the vaccine as soon as they can.
- Keep your parenting plan in place as much as possible. Allow your child to spend time with their other parent and keep in touch by calls and video conferencing if they can’t visit Dad or Mom because of someone in their household is ill.
- Problem solve with your ex if your child is struggling with distance learning. Do you need to hire an outside tutor to help? Is a grandparent or other family member available to pitch in when needed?
- Keep your child’s health and well-being ahead of your own interests. If your ex can better facilitate distance learning, you may need to allow your child to spend more time with them for now. Or if your living circumstances put you at a greater risk of infection.
Keep in mind that the current health crisis will come to end. Ultimately, the coronavirus pandemic is a temporary situation. You will have more time to spend with your child and be able to return to a more typical coparenting schedule when the pandemic lessens.