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Some divorcing couples in Ohio might not be able to create a strong co-parenting relationship. For the most part, co-parenting requires exes to set aside their differences, focus on their children and communicate effectively. In some divorces, there is simply too much conflict for this to happen. However, there is an alternative, known as parallel parenting, that allows exes to share custody or have a custody and visitation arrangement.

In parallel parenting, exes avoid direct communication as much as possible. This helps remove the likelihood of conflict. Parents who intend to use this approach need to make a plan that is very structured. They might want to set up a channel for indirect communication. This may involve sharing calendars or using email to communicate any critical information.

Parallel parenting also involves agreeing to relinquish the impulse to control the other parent or their relationship with the child. In contrast, co-parenting involves respecting the other parent’s relationship with the child, but exes may be much more entwined in their approaches to parenting. Parallel parenting is not necessarily a permanent state of affairs. The structure may need to change as children get older. Parents might even find that over the years, their negative feelings toward one another dissipate enough to allow for co-parenting.

Even if they are going to use a parallel parenting arrangement, ex-spouses could reach a child custody agreement through negotiation instead of going to court. Attorneys can help settle issues such as parenting time, visitation schedules and the overall custody situation.