If you are raising sons and co-parenting with your ex, chances are communication is strained at best. Here is a parenting tip I think could be valuable and helpful.
For the best results both parents need to be on same page in both homes-creating a team; more importantly the kids need to know mom and dad are in communication and are going to be consistent!
Introducing the “Logbook”
In the military, we kept a “logbook” so that each shift knew what was done the previous shift. This tool was invaluable for providing insight to what had gone on previously that week or day.
So Here is My Tip When Raising Sons
I’m proposing you keep a “logbook” of sorts with your ex. My suggestion is the logbook is in the form of an email that you send when the child changes households. The email gets sent on transition day prior to the parent picking up the child. It would read something like this:
Monday: “Ethan made the choice to not do his homework today, so he chose no electronics (a natural consequence).”
Tuesday: “Today was a good day, Ethan seemed in good spirits.”
Wednesday: “Ethan didn’t want to go to school today; we worked through it and he went.”
And so forth for Thursday, Friday and Saturday; the logbook should contain information about medications, sports or club activities etc.
Sunday (transition day): “Overall a good week. Ethan’s anger outbursts seem to be getting better and he is looking forward to going to see mom/dad. He hit his brother, choosing not to play video games rest of day (natural consequence).” When mom/dad picks him up at 4:00 p.m. they now have information needed to be consistent.
Raising Sons: Communication Made Easy
Think about this and how it could help! By keeping a logbook, you take away the ability for Ethan to do something at mom’s house that dad doesn’t know about and vice versa.
One of the biggest issues I see are parents arguing that one parent is stricter than the other or that one parent doesn’t know what the other’s week was like. This can take away the frustration of calling or texting each other which can sometimes lead to things unrelated to the child.
It’s tough in these circumstances, I understand. What I know for sure, and through my research and analysis is when kids are involved it’s critical that they have consistency. Communication must happen and this provides a way to do it and limits the opportunity to “get at/ into it with each other!”
Give It a Try
I hope you’ll consider this and take the steps to implement. It’s first and foremost in the best interest of your child and can ultimately help in co-parenting. You have nothing to lose by giving this a try. I have several families that find it very beneficial.
Lastly, negotiate and compromise in private before presenting rules to your children. It is most important to be responsible parents not “good or bad parents!”
What’s your thoughts on this tool? Could it work for you? Do you have a similar communication tool you use? Stop by my Facebook to share your thoughts or questions.