Just because one parent is given sole custody of a child doesn’t mean that the non-custodial parent is completely removed from the child’s life. In fact, it’s almost always better for a child to have both parents actively and frequently involved, regardless of who is the custodial parent. A Huffington Post blog recently discussed the value of having two parents amicably involved in their child’s life, and the benefits this relationship can have.

The author explained the uncomfortable feelings that plagued her at piano recitals or social events in which her estranged parents were forced to interact. The author then contrasts these feelings of unease with the joy she sees in the child of her friend, who has not let divorce get in the way of co-parenting. This idea is especially relevant to Georgia residents, where “parenting time” tends to see custody arrangements with a near 50/50 split.

While trying to make sure that your child is as well provided for as you can, it can sometimes slip your mind that the child likely still loves your former spouse and views him or her as a parental figure as well. Badmouthing a former spouse in the child’s presence, or getting into fights with your former spouse, cannot only be confusing to a child, but also damaging to the child’s development.

There’s no shame in conceding that a marriage is not working out, and couples should never be afraid to seek divorce if they truly need it. However, just because you divorce from your spouse does not mean that there must be animosity. A peaceful, fair divorce agreement cannot only be beneficial to the futures of you and your former spouse, but also, most importantly, to the future of your child.

Source: Huffington Post, “The Best Gift Divorced Parents Can Give Their Kids,” Amy Arndt, May 27, 2014