3 No-Conflict Gifts for Your Co-Parent on Valentine's Day

Although Valentine’s Day is really just a Hallmark holiday, it has become important for many people, and can be source of stress. Where should I make dinner reservations? Should I just buy flowers and chocolate, or do I buy something more expensive, like jewelry?

It can be even more complicated if you are no longer in a relationship with your children’s other parent. Your children are learning from you and your co-parent about life, relationships, and parenting; therefore, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to show that you can be civil and cooperative with your co-parent because of your love for your greatest gift together – your children.

Here are 3 no-conflict gifts for your co-parent:

  1. Give yourself a gift. If you are still upset and depressed about the breakdown of your relationship, your emotions may be dictating your actions. In order to co-parent, you need to appreciate yourself and recognize your abilities. Recognize that you are able to move on with new opportunities. Show yourself some love. Get some flowers and put them in a place where you will enjoy them. Dance and sing to a new CD. Buy a DVD or book, and enjoy the solitude. Pick up dinner so you don’t have to cook.
  2. Offer your co-parent more parenting time with the children. You may spend the rest of the year fighting over parenting time. Why not surprise him/her with an unsolicited offer to have more parenting time, no strings attached (and I don’t mean for Valentine’s Day, when they’ve already made plans to spend time with the new person in their lives). It shows your children that you support and encourage your children to have a relationship with both parents, and your co-parent should appreciate the gesture – after he/she passes out, of course.
  3. Make a list of the reasons why your co-parent is a good parent. You can probably fill a book with a list of reasons why your co-parent is a jerk and a loser. Once a year, dig a little deeper within yourself, and put together some of his/her positive qualities. Next time something happens, before you react, give some thought to this list. You may even want to share it with your co-parent. Now that’s just crazy!

     Posted on February 14, 2011 at 5:30 am | No comment

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