Tips for coparenting in the teen years

When parents in Wisconsin get a divorce, their children are affected as well. As those children move into the teen years, parents may face a new set of challenges. It is important to avoid some common errors when co-parenting teens, such as easing off on communication with one another on the assumption that their teen will fill in the gaps. This can mean one parent does not realize that there are certain issues on which the teen may need guidance.

Parents might also start to default to relying on the teen to carry any important information between them. This can put a lot of power in the teen's hands and can be unreliable. As teens become more independent and are able to drive themselves places, they may take advantage of parents' ignorance if parents stop coordinating schedules with one another regularly. Parents should also continue making an effort to get to know their teen's friends instead of assuming the other parent does.

While parents still need to monitor teens' activities and provide them with consistency, it is also important that they are able to be flexible with the parenting schedule at this stage. Teens are likely to be much busier with friends and other activities, and the schedule that has worked well up to this point might need to be revised.

Child custody and support can be among the difficult elements of divorce to negotiate. There are both practical and emotional considerations for both parents and children. However, it is important to remember that a custody and visitation schedule can be modified if circumstances change and it becomes necessary. As long as there are no serious issues, teens still need to spend time with both parents, but an older child may want some input into the schedule.

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