Co Parenting

Following my post before about the impending separation when Jackson spent time with his dad I gave the entire situation a lot of thought and realised that I can’t be selfish when it comes to my son and that everything I do has to be in his best interests to give him the best upbringing that our situation can. 

I spent a lot of sleepless nights working out what would be best for him and what I could live with and in the end I came up with a solution that I think that atleast for the foreseeable  future will suit me and his dad and most importantly Jackson. (And his dad agreed)

This is the message that I sent to his dad:

Let’s start somewhere we can both agree – we have a gorgeous, funny, happy, clever, active 8 month old who deserves the best life we can give him that works for all of us.

We both grew up in a ‘normal’, stable family, mum and dad both around and influential. I want that for our son too, it’s what we planned when we decided to have him and it’s what we should strive to give him.

Having researched extensively, talked to other mums and taken Jacksons personality into consideration I still feel that him having one bedroom and one permanent address is best all round. Children need somewhere that is theirs that they know they will return to each day, and I know that other families split their children’s time between parents, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not adversely affecting their children. With his home a stable and permanent environment he will have the best chance of a grounded upbringing. 

This said obviously you will want to spend time with him, and again, striving to give him the ‘normal’ family upbringing I’m proposing that we do this as a family. If we were together then your days off would be spent with both of us going out and/or spending time together as a family, so I propose that a minimum of once a week you come over say 8am, do breakfast with us, spend the day, have tea with us and participate in the bedtime routine (I’m assuming that one day we will get one!) we were planning on spending our lives together so one day a week should be feasible without arguing, sarky comments or anything. This way Jackson gets a taste of a normal family life so he doesn’t miss out on too much. I’d suggest that which days be planned out a month in advance allowing us both to plan our lives around it without too much trouble. I’ve said a minimum of one day a week, as some weeks it would be nice for him  to see more of you, but I think he should see you at least once a week without fail giving him a good chance to bond with you and spend some quality time with you. This arrangement will also allow you rest time from work, time to do your own thing and to live your own life while maintaining a close relationship with your son. Once he starts at school I’d assume your day a week would be a weekend where possible, but where your days off don’t fall on weekends maybe coming to pick him up from school and a trip to the park or a meal out in the evening would work?

I also want him to grow up having a close relationship with his grandparents and uncles, so will continue to endeavour to accommodate visiting them regularly. (I reserve the right to remove Jackson from any situation that I consider dangerous or upsetting and then reassess the arrangement accordingly)

I suggest that any new partners (either yours or mine) not be introduced or even mentioned to Jackson until we are convinced they will last, having lasted for at least 6 months, this limits his exposure to too many people walking into his life to just walk out again. I also think that even if we marry a new partner, they should continue to be referred to by their name, he should only ever have one mum and dad.

I hope that this sounds fair to you, I have spent the last 8 months worrying about how we are going to get this to work out, and I really hope that this could be the answer to giving our son the best upbringing we possibly can. Together.

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