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Co-Parenting, And The Dreaded Switch

The transfer. The dread. The wait. The worry. The wonder….will it happen on time?

So many thoughts going through your head as you head out to the drop off, feeling nervous, angered, resentful, hurt. You feel as though you never get enough time with your kids, and it’s unfair. It was trying enough getting this time with them, and now, you have to hand them over to your Ex, whom you feel much negativity towards, for a multitude of reasons. Yet still, you're positive, hopeful, looking forward to seeing their cheery faces. Now,enroute, in the wait, there's worry. 'Will they be on time, or late. Again. Why should I be on time? Why should I have to give them over?

I get asked this question a lot. Many Ex's want tit-for-tat. They think, what's good for the goose, is good for the gander. Right? Why not? Well, not. When I get asked this question, my response is usually something like 'what exactly is your goal here? Revenge, a long-lasting sting, an ego-delivered withholding of the kids to hurt and anger your Ex? I know you're thinking yes, but at the moment, right or wrong, good or bad, the courts or your PC have deemed it law that the kids spend time with their other parent, and since you are always leading by example and being heard and watched by your kids, must do the right thing with elegant behaviour, until you're behind closed doors and can vent and let all your anger and frustration out where the kids can't see or hear you.

It’s the heart wrenching, impossible transfer. Yet, it must be done, and here’s how you can make that happen with good for everyone.

The emotional upheaval of packing them up and relocating them may be disruptive and upsetting for you and the kids. Avoidance behaviour, or sharing a few frank words and thoughts at the transfer would be very welcomed and may even make you feel justified, but you won't go there. You're above that. So, you settle on Karma.

Contrary to what some would like to believe, Karma isn’t about ‘sticking it’ to another person, or wishing bad fortune on them, knowing that they'll get their just desserts. Karma, is actually the good that you do, and the reward from doing good, and behaving and living well. The key to remember is to keep your focus on what’s important; your kids, and how you appear in front of them. This is where your energies must go. To them. Good not only comes from good, but good begets good, in one way or another. And, it physiologically takes more effort and energy to be unkind, acrimonious and resentful, and to have to remember to be unkind and angry, than to not. Live well. It's the best 'revenge', and goal.

So, if you’re contemplating being late, not returning the children when agreed, or expressing you self in a colourful manner, think twice. If you’re in a situation where you feel you’ve been treated unfairly, and you’re seeking to right the wrong, consider this; What you make exist, persists, and kids, no matter what age, have big ears and big eyes. What you’re exhibiting to your children, and the added stress and visuals you may be putting on them, is irresponsible, unfair, and is about you and your unresolved feeling towards your Ex. Donn’t bring your kids into the mix. Your behaviours affect them. They sense it. They see it. They feel it. At the end of the day, your kids need to see and feel your love, not your anger.

How you express and show that, in everything you do, either builds and creates your relationship with them, or breaks and hinders it, inevitably teaching them behaviours that are less than respectful and beneficial. Remember who you’re raising. Are you raising vindictive, resentful, angry sons and daughters, who may carry these traits into adulthood, or are you raising caring children who will grow into fathers, mothers , husbands, and wives. Think about it.

Your children are subject to every single negative, hurtful, angry mean, conflict-ridden and ego-centric experience of every circumstance and event you create, respond, or react to. It will be different from yours, and because they’re children, they're highly influential, and what they see may be more cutting than you initially intended. Show your kids your best self. You'll be happy you did. They will be too. If you're having difficulty with your emotions, I'm here to help.

Don't mess with the transfer. It will likely hurt your two objectives. The first one, to hurt your ex spouse. The second, to raise children who feel loved, know how to behave and respect others, and who are confident, empowered and loving individuals themselves. You are always leading by example. Lead wisely. Lead lovingly. Put your negative emotions to rest, as they are only self-serving, and may end up making you feel less than model after. Live better. Live well, raise your children well, and live good and happy. That’s the best karma.