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Post-divorce parenting tips

Everyone knows of the Ten Commandments, but many people wish they could find a similar list of directions for parents who face the prospect of divorce. A recent article on a women's lifestyle website deliver "commandments" for post-divorce parents on how to share parenting time in a healthy way.

The writer says she and her ex are now on good terms, but the four-year journey to that spot was a difficult one. So she hopes to help her readers spare themselves some of the anguish she endured.

Her first of seven "commandments" is one that has been echoed in many other places by many other people: do not speak badly of the other parent when you are around your children.

Yes, this can be a difficult rule to follow, especially if your ex has lied to you or cheated on you, etc. But remember always that no matter that person's flaws, he or she is still your child's other parent.

"Your child is a product of both of you, and a put-down of the other parent is a put-down of your child," a psychologist who helps children of divorce says.

So even though you and the other parent no longer love each other, your child still loves you and your ex -- your child's other parent. Your criticism complicates the child's desire to love both parents.

Another "commandment": do not put your children in the middle of your conflicts. Don't force your kids into a position of picking sides or refereeing conflicts between parents.

And another: don't question your kids about the time they spend with their other parent. Don't make your child act as go-between. If you have questions to pose to your ex (or soon-to-be-ex), pose them yourself when you and the other parent can have a private conversation.

Friends and family can help you do what's right for your child during a divorce and after a divorce. An experienced Nashville family law attorney can help you protect your kids and your parental rights throughout the legal process of divorce.

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