The Benefits of Mediation for Resolving Co-Parenting Disputes in the UK

divorce meditation

We’ve all been there. When emotions are high, it can be difficult to reach agreements that are mutually beneficial. And that is where meditation can step in. In this article, we will explore the benefits of mediation, specifically as it applies to UK family law.

What is Mediation?

Mediation, also known as mediation, is the process of hiring a mediator or mediators to work with the family as they sort through disputes. Mediation is an alternative to long court battles, which are often traumatic for all involved, very expensive, and damaging to the co-parenting relationship. However, when families mediate, they have lower costs and better outcomes, which benefits both partners and any children they have.

What is the Process of Mediation?

In the UK, mediation goes through a process starting with choosing a mediation firm and having a mediator assigned to their case. One thing that should be pointed out is that children can be involved in the mediation process through a method called child inclusive mediation, which allows children the chance to voice their own wants and needs.

Once the mediator is selected, the process of mediation begins. This usually follows a pretty standard series of steps, including:

  • Step One: First call. This can be one call or a series between the mediator and each partner. During the call, the mediation process is explained and present concerns are documented, although there is no in-depth consultation at this point.
  • Step Two: Mediation Information Assessment Meeting. Also known as MIAM, this meeting is between the mediator with to discuss the history of the family, the divorce or separation and for the mediator to go into more detail about the mediation process. This meeting is done on an individual basis and is completely confidential. What one parent shares is never shared with the other parent and vice versa.
  • Step Three: Joint Meetings: This starts with the first joint meeting where they sign the Agreement to Mediate form and then discuss pressing issues that need to be dealt with quickly. Once that is set, an agenda is created. After the initial meeting, there will be additional joint meetings to review and set child custody, financials and other issues that are raised.

Mediation is not a quick process and depending on the scope of the agreement that needs to be made, it can mean many meetings until everything is properly ironed out.

How do Mediators Help?

Mediators can help you work through communication blocks but there are three documents that they can help set in place.

  1. A parenting plan that goes over the arrangements for the children, who they will live with, visitation and the overall day-to-day care of the children/
  2. Open financial statements will lay out the financial information of both parents in an open manner so it can be easier to discuss child support and shared expenses for the children.
  3. Memorandum of understanding is a document that records discussion and decisions made.

This are all important documents that will ensure a smooth transition to co-parenting.

Who Pays for Mediation

With mediation, both partners would split the cost of mediation between them. This can be split evenly or partners could agree for one parent to pay more than the other depending on how finances were divided after the split (if finances, including shared wealth, hasn’t been split yet, it could be based on who is earning more).

One thing to mention is that mediation is not free; however, the UK has a program where families can get up to £500 to apply to the cost of mediation. This is called the Family Mediation Voucher Scheme that you can apply for, although it is not available to everyone.

3 Benefits of Meditation

Now that we have an understanding of what is involved with mediation, especially in the UK, let’s look at some of the benefits families will experience during the process of separation and divorce. These benefits will not only create solid agreements, but will allow you and your ex partner to build a solid co-parenting plan and relationship.

Benefit of Mediation Number One: Opens Communication

The biggest benefit of mediation in the UK is that mediators serve the function of opening up communication. Court hearings can create tensions that often shut down communication; however, a mediator is less formal and offers less tension.

Mediators have a key role to play in facilitating dialogue between both parents. When there are communication blocks, a mediator can make suggestions, encourage outcomes and keep communication flowing.

In addition to communication, studies have shown that when mediation is used to make a decision for co-parenting, that decision is more likely to be beneficial for all parties involved and parents are more likely to adhere to those decisions.

Benefit of Mediation Number Two: Mediation is Private

Another benefit that parents often don’t think about is that mediation is private. Unlike court proceedings, mediation can assist in your relationship being out in the public eye. In addition, many of the agreements that you make during mediation is protected by privacy laws, which means that they cannot be presented to the court in the event that mediation fails.

This privacy is important as it aids in encouraging both parties to be open and honest about all aspects of their marriage, the breakdown, the process that got them to mediation and their goals for co-parenting.

Benefit of Mediation Number Three: Cost          

Finally, the third benefit for mediation is that it is relatively cheap when you compare it to the costs of going to court over these disputes. Mediators make the process quick, they adhere to agendas and set a maximum number of sessions that you will have. This enables both partners to stay on task and to have control over the process, which they wouldn’t have if they were going to court.

It is important to reiterate that mediation is not free; however, if it works smoothly, it can save a lot of time and money for both parties involved.

Finding the best mediators is particularly important for this process to go smoothly; however, when you have excellent mediators, you will find that you are protected, your kids are taken care of, and you can focus completely on moving forward to a new relationship as co-parents. And that, in the end, is the greatest benefit of all with mediation to resolve co-parenting disputes.

Navigating Shared Custody: Tips for Australian Parents

Shared custody

When parents make the hard decision to separate, there are many things that they have to consider, especially when they have children together. Shared custody is a major step toward moving forward but it can be a bit difficult to navigate, which is why it is important to follow these tips to make the process of navigating shared custody easier for Australian parents.

What is Shared Custody?

Before we look at shared custody, it should be noted that under Australian law, it is referred to as shared parental responsibility to remove any negative connotations to the term custody, which implies ownership. Shared parental responsibility is when both parents share visitation rights, care, duties, powers, expenses, authority and responsibilities of their children; however, it should be noted that with Australian law, shared custody does not mean 50/50 rights, unless parents agree to it. In fact, parents can agree to a number of different arrangements for custody including:

  • 50/50: A straightforward way to do 50/50 is alternating weeks.
  • 60/40: 4 days with primary caregiver, 3 days with non-primary caregiver
  • 80/20: 5.5 days with the primary caregiver, 1.5 days with non-primary caregiver. This arrangement also works great with alternating weekends.
  • 2/2/3: 2 days with the start parent, 2 with the second parent, 3 with the start parent.
  • 3/4/4/3: This is similar to 2/2/3 except the schedule switches every week so week 1, one parent gets 4 days and week 2, the other parent gets 4 days. It’s an option to have that 50/50 split but the kids won’t be gone for an entire week.

In addition to these arrangements, in Australia, many courts place the mother as the primary caregiver. However, stepparents can apply for parental responsibility and parental rights as can same sex partners.

Now that we know the laws around shared custody, let’s look at ways that you can navigate it smoothly.

Tip Number One: Focus on the Needs of the Kids

One of the first tips that every parent should follow when they are separating is to put aside a lot of their own emotions and focus on the needs of the kids. It can be difficult but if you both make a mutual decision to do this, you can avoid a lot of the tension, arguments and fights that happen when you are focused on your own needs during this challenging time.

If possible, try to get a formal child custody agreement in place as quickly as possible. Once you have the agreement, you can set up a schedule that works to the agreement and use 2houses to keep the schedule working.

Be sure to discuss with kids if they are older what their own wants and needs are. You can also let them know that some things they cannot decide on, but other things they can help with the decision. If kids feel heard during the process, they are able to adjust to the changes easier.

While you may need some mediation to work through emotions, or to use an app like 2houses to communicate through, never work through this stuff with your kids present. Avoid saying negative things about the other parent or arguing together. If you are having a tough time doing so, agree to use the app for communication until you are able to work through the emotions around your separation.

Tip Number Two: Set Boundaries

Boundaries can be difficult when you are used to having constant access to your child and your ex partner but it is something that you should set for the entire family. This means that when you child is with the other parent, you do not contact the child or break into their visitation time. Another point is that you need to set boundaries on how your relationship will be with your ex partner. If you are at a place where you can start doing activities with the kids together, then discuss what will work better for all. If you aren’t, keep your interactions with your ex partner strictly about the kids. This means not discussing other life events happening in each others’ lives. In the future, you may get to that point, but, for now, keep it separate.

Finally, make sure that you set boundaries for your kids that happen in both homes. Rules, schedules and so on should be agreed upon by both parents and followed exactly the same in both households. Stability is important in providing your children with the best transition from one home to two.

Tip Number Three: Use a Mediation App or Platform

Choose a mediation app or platform for you and your ex partner to use. When you have a mediator, you can reduce a lot of the tension that comes with it. In addition, you can organize schedules, balance shared expenses and keep your ex partner involved with all aspects of their child’s life. When you use a mediation app, such as 2houses, you are able to really focus on what matters, which is making sure that your kids are thriving even when they are living in two separate houses.

In addition, you can focus on your own needs as you move through separation without your children experiencing as much turmoil as they would if you and your ex partner continue having to work through conflict topics and tension.

While it may not seem like a lot, following these three tips can help ensure the transition from a single household to two separate ones goes smoothly. It will take time, and patience, but you can move forward and your children will appreciate the efforts that you are making to ensure that their well-being and happiness comes first.

Navigating can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be when you follow these tips and when you take the step to use 2houses.

Separated Australian Families are Enjoying the Benefits of 2houses

Benefit of 2houses

Co-parenting can be a lot of hard yakka but something that many Australian parents are finding out, it doesn’t have to be. In fact, for Australian parents who are separated, or divorced, co-parenting can be as easy as a simple download that helps create a bridge between parents, even when there are continued tensions from the separation.

So what is this amazing download that will be the bridge between co-parents? The answer is 2houses—-a co-parenting app that more and more Australian parents are discovering and utilizing for all of the amazing benefits that the app offers.

But what are those benefits? Well, we are here to explore just what Australian families are the happiest about with 2houses.

Benefit Number One: Custody Sharing Made Easy

When kids are going between two homes, there can be a lot of logistics to work through. It isn’t as simple as grab your bag, and there needs to be a lot of communication, scheduling and planning for it to be pulled off easily. 2houses is perfect for making it easy.

The app is designed to set schedules and to communicate completely over the app or platform. What this means is that you can let the other parent know about any changes in the schedule, which they can sign off on, messages about events happening or updating any documents that are needed to be shared.

Not only does this ability of the app reduce confusion, but it also means the parents are communicating together and not through their child, which happens quite often. In addition, it removes a lot of the tension that can occur, especially when parents recently split.

Knowing when things are happening, what’s happening, what is needed for the child and having accessibility to data during an emergency makes custody sharing much easier.

Benefit Number Two: Less Tension on Shared Expenses

As you know, separation and divorce come with a lot of tensions and one of them is definitely in the finances. It can be difficult to finally reach a financial agreement and decide on what expenses will be shared. In addition, even after the financial agreement is reached, it can be difficult to work through payments and getting everything shared.

The 2houses platform and app is perfect for this process. The app is designed to help manage expenses with shared wish lists to list unexpected expenses, such as a new pair of shoes needed by the child, and a budget tool for known shared expenses. It also allows you to keep up with balances and know who paid for what, which helps avoid the conflict topic of financials.

There are so many benefits with avoiding these conflict topics, but the biggest one is that when parents are working together amicably, the kids have two cooperating homes to go to and that eases a lot of the tension or them.

Benefit Number Three: Child Friendly Use

One thing that 2houses emphasises is that co-parenting apps should be beneficial to the whole family. While a large amount of the app is designed for parents to partner together without the conflict topics or as much tension as can happen normally, a lot of thought went into ways that 2houses can support the whole family.

And that benefit really is important to Australian families. So how is 2houses child friendly?

First, the app is extremely easy to navigate. This makes it great for parents who aren’t as tech savvy or for younger kids who are still learning how to use apps. Second, the app is designed for kids to also connect with parents on it. When a child is added to the platform, they can look over the schedule and see what is happening. This helps provide stability that might be missing as they move back and forth between two homes.

In addition, being able to connect with parents, the kids can send journals and messages to the parent they are not with so that they can keep building a strong connection. Having these options supports the health and happiness of children through the process of separation and divorce.

Benefit Number Four: Cost Effective

We all want to save a few quid, especially when household finances drop after separation or divorce so that is why Australian families are choosing 2houses. Not only is it affordable, less than 20 quid a month, it can easily be a shared expense. You can also purchase it yearly to get additional pricing savings.

With all of the features it offers, and the benefits of co-parenting in positive and effective manners, there are very few reasons to not download it and use this app. And cost is one of those reasons.

Benefit Number Five: Creates Options for Communication

Finally, communication is key for co-parenting and it isn’t always easy to have when you are going through a separation. With the 2houses app, parents can communicate through the app because it works like a third party. In addition, the app is a neutral option and you can share information in a number of ways: through the calendar and scheduling, with messages, through the documents folder and with the journal and album features.

When information and communication is flowing, it helps reduce those tension conversations and allow the kids to simply enjoy their time with their parents, instead of being a messenger for them. And the app helps to keep emotion and tension out of the interactions since everything is organized, easy to use and easy to share with your ex partner.

When it comes to co-parenting apps, this is the one that makes the most sense. It understands the needs of Australian parents and it exceeds the expectations to meet those needs. Parents can focus on parenting and leave all the rest to the app for a low cost that won’t put added pressure on either parents’ finances.

Understanding Your Rights: Canadian Parents, the Law and Divorce or Separation

Legal consideration for canadian separated parents

O’Canada, where do we begin when it comes to Canadian parents, the law and divorce or separation.

First, it’s going to be okay. While it may seem like there are a million different things to consider and understand when you are separating with your partner and taking the steps to divorce, it is not as overwhelming as it originally is.

Second, Canada has a lot of protections for all parents during a divorce and when we are looking at same sex couples, more than two parents and so many other unique ways families are formed, Canada has made the effort to recognize all of those diverse family styles, which allows for Canadian parents to understand their own rights.

Third, we are here to help you understand your rights when it comes to Canadian law, which should take out both the guesswork as well as any confusion that you may have. So let’s dive in and look at those rights that you have as Canadian parents.

Canada’s a Huge Country; Does that Mean the Laws are all the Same?

The answer is a bit harder to answer. While there are many overlapping laws that are applied by federal court rulings, it is important to note that many provinces have their own laws and rules that you should be aware of for your individual place of residence. As this is a much more in-depth look, for the sake of this article, we will focus on more of the broad rights that affect all Canadian parents.

However, before we do, it should be noted that all provinces, as well as all territories, have child support guidelines as drawn out by the federal government with the exception of one—Alberta. That being said, there are some guidelines that are province based so how child support is calculated will depend on amendments provinces and territories have made to the child support guideline or if they are relying heavily on a province drafted guideline.

The New Divorce Act in Canada

On March 1, 2021, the divorce act was changed to reflect new shifts in language. This includes remove the terms custody and access and switching to parenting arrangements to remove the indication of ownership of children with the old terms. Not all provinces and territories have adopted the terminology for parenting arrangements but Canadian parents should expect this to happen Canada wide eventually.

Who is a Parent?

Under Canadian law, a parent is the mother and any other parents who are listed on the birth certificate or adoption papers. In Canada, with the exception of Alberta that still has it set at two, up to four individuals can be listed on a birth certificate; however, five or more can be added to a child’s birth certificate with a court order. These birth certificates are to reflect the ever changing dynamics of Canadian families to include same sex couples, donor parents who are involved with raising the child but may not be living with the child, or surrogate parents, etc.

It should be noted that in the case of three or more parents, there are usually parental agreements where donors and surrogates sign off on parental responsibility but are still on the birth certificate. In these events, they would not be part of the parenting arrangements as per their original contract and agreement.

The multi-parent birth certificates allow for same sex partners, and those using surrogates, to be included on the birth certificate whether they have a biological tie to the child or not.

In addition to biological parents, stepparents can apply for parenting arrangements in the event of separation or divorce. They can also be responsible for child support depending on the length of time they were in the child’s life and other conditions.

What is a Parenting Arrangement?

A parenting arrangement is a plan that you make with your partner, whether through mediation, on your own or with the court, in regard to the care of your children. With parenting arrangements, the same laws apply regardless of whether or not you and your ex partner were married or unmarried at any time in your relationship. That means that unmarried Canadian parents have the same rights as those who were married.

With the parenting arrangement, parents will agree on where the children will live, what the shared visitation will look like and who will be the primary caregiver. In addition to living and visitation arrangements, where the kids go to school will also be decided in the parenting arrangement.

Finally, both parents will agree on important decisions for the children such as education, medical care and religion. In parenting arrangements, if any of these things were to change, both parents need to reach an agreement on it that is reflective of the best interests of the child.

What are the Best Interests of the Child?

Although this article is looking at the rights of Canadian parents, one of the main takeaways is that the rights of the parents are secondary to the best interests of the child. For example, if a judge deems that contact with a parent would not be in the best interest of the child, that parent will not have contact.

With best interests, the following parameters are considered by the courts:

  1. The child’s physical, psychological and emotional well-being is the primary concern of all courts.
  2. The child’s safety and security are additional primary concerns.
  3. There should be consideration and access for healthy relationships with each parent as well as siblings and extended family members such as grandparents as long as the primary concerns are met and contact will have benefits for the child’s well-being.
  4. All arrangements should lead to stability for the child’s needs in regard to their age and development.
  5. Care arrangements should be reflective of both current separation and any future shifts due to divorce.
  6. In any parenting arrangement, culture, spiritual upbringing, heritage, and religion should be respected and included in the arrangement. This is especially important in families with mixed heritage and cultures.
  7. Indigenous rights need to be a primary concern.

Basically, the child’s culture, heritage, age and development need to be considered so the child does not suffer any negative loses of those things during separation and divorce.

As parenting arrangements are for a healthy transition from one to two homes for the children, some rights of the parents may not be considered during this time. In the end, Canadian parents need to be aware of the laws for their individual province and should come to the parenting arrangement with the best interests of the child. If they do both of those things, they should not have too many obstacles when sorting out the best arrangements for your children, yourself and one that works for your ex partner as well

How to Co-Parent Effectively with 2houses

How to Co-Parent Effectively with 2houses

Parenting…before I ever was a parent, I said to myself, I will never count to three…never. Kids will understand consequences of actions and because of how I’ll parent, we’ll never get to those counts. Then we ended up counting to three…and then, as I went through my separation and divorce, I found myself counting to get through my own emotions that were bubbling to the surface.

But I wanted to stop counting. Life happens and that means that sometimes, even with the best of intentions things don’t work out…just like when I started counting up to three to get my preschooler to listen.

And I realized that I needed to listen to be an effective co-parent. This meant listening to the needs of my kids, listening to the concerns of my ex partner and listening to what I wanted to achieve as well. And that achievement was a new normal where my ex partner and I could co-parent effectively.

Which brings me to 2houses. Not only did it really help set the tone for how my ex partner and I co-parent, but it also helped remove that tension that was leading to those moments when all I could do was count in an effort to reduce my frustration. So how did it help me co-parent effectively?

It Removed those Conflict Topics From Our Daily Communication

The first thing that 2houses did to help us co-parent effectively was to separate out those conflict topics through the use of the app. My ex partner and I could discuss finances, shared expenses and scheduling all through the app and it was incredibly easy to agree on things such as schedule changes that were needed.

With the platform dealing with those harder topics that usually bring out a lot of tension, we were able to focus any conversations we did have around the needs of the kids and we found that it was easier to have civil conversations during hand offs. We agreed to use the app for anything that could lead to a potential argument so when we were interacting, the kids didn’t see us fighting.

Created Predictability and Stability for Our Kids

While the calendar on the app really made it easy for us to create predictability for the kids, the other features on the platform allowed us to create stability. If things happened at one house or another, we could write journals to let the other parent know what happened. If a routine wasn’t working properly, we could send messages to problem solve it in the easiest manner possible.

This was important for us to create homes that had the same routines, rules and boundaries so our kids had the stability between two homes. They didn’t have additional stress by having constantly changing rules and routines as we were both on the same page.

Allowed our Kids to Stay Connected

While a major rule that we follow, and one that 2houses recommends for families, is never to infringe on the time parents are spending together, kids are kids. Sometimes, my kids wanted me when they were with my parent and vice versa. It is normal, especially since they are going through a transition like my ex partner and I were.

The 2houses platform was amazing for this because kids could initiate contact no matter where they were. We gave them each their own access to the platform and they could share messages and photos with my ex partner, and with me when they were not with me, as they wanted to. Because it was usually just quick messages back and forth, it doesn’t feel like our time is being cut into and the kids can touch base to recenter themselves as they need.

It helped us co-parent more effectively because we could really tune in on what our kids needed. We could also connect together when the kids were having a harder time with the separation and come up with strategies to ensure that they felt connected to both of us, even when they weren’t with us.

Balanced our Budgets so Money Stopped Being an Issue

I already mentioned this with conflict topics since money is one of the biggest conflict topics that you can face as co-parenting. Even with firm financial and child support agreements, finances can be a hard topic that causes a lot of conflicts between co-parents. Which is why 2houses really takes the stress out of finances.

With the app, we were able to keep track of all the monthly expenses that we had for the kids. These were routine expenses that we both agreed to share responsibility for as well as any emergency expenses that came up in the month. Plus, we could slot in things like year end field trips for the kids or when they needed new clothes.

We were also able to purchase those larger gifts together using the wish list feature in the finances and agreed to do the gift giving during a time when we were meeting for a handoff with the kids. It really did make the difference and created a new family dynamic for our kids where we were cooperating and co-parenting effectively.

While it hasn’t been 100% easy, 2houses offered a lot of options for us to step back and allow the platform to be the mediator. We were able to really stop taking shots at each other and realize that us separating, while not the easiest or anything we really wanted, was the best option for us and for our kids.

By using the platform, we were able to get back to the job of parenting and our kids have truly thrived in this new arrangement where they can feel the stability, and predictability we’ve forged through the app all while feeling the support that comes from two parents who love themregardless of whether they are in the same home or not.

And for me, the only counting I’ve done is being able to count all the ways that 2houses has enabled me to co-parent effectively.

Healthcare for Children of Divorced Parents: Strategies for Effective Communication and Coordination

Healthcare for Children of Divorced Parents

Divorce can be a difficult time for families, especially for children. With over One Million children experiencing the divorce of their parents in the United States each year, one of the many challenges that divorced parents have to face is ensuring that their children receive adequate healthcare. 

Although sharing parenting obligations with a former partner could come with more confusion and dealing with healthcare topics can feel tortuous, co-parents are better off if they handle issues proactively and with a transparent system in mind. Parents must make medical care decisions for their children with attention and transparency to ensure they continue receiving the treatment they ought. Effective communication and coordination between parents can help them in achieving this goal. 

In this article, we will discuss six strategies for effective communication and coordination to ensure that the healthcare needs of children of divorced parents are met.

Ways of employing effective communication and coordination to ensure children healthcare needs 

Establish Clear Communication Channels 

One of the essential strategies for effective communication and coordination is establishing clear communication channels between divorced parents, Which may include regular meetings, phone calls, or emails to discuss appointments, medications, and any changes in the child’s health status. Parents must communicate regularly and inform each other about their child’s healthcare needs; this will help to ensure that both parents are on the same page regarding their child’s healthcare and can work together to make informed decisions.

Share Important Information 

Sharing important health information about the child is essential for effective healthcare coordination; this includes medical histories, allergies, and any chronic conditions. In cases where the child sees multiple healthcare providers, sharing this information with all relevant parties is essential to ensure continuity of care. Both parents should have access to this information and keep it updated regularly; this will help ensure that both parents are informed about their child’s health status and can work together to make informed decisions.

Create a Healthcare Plan 

Creating a healthcare plan is effective for coordinating healthcare between divorced parents. The program should outline the child’s healthcare needs and how they will be met. It should include information about healthcare providers, medications, and emergency contact information. Both parents should have a copy of the plan, which should be updated regularly to reflect changes in the child’s health status; this will help to ensure that both parents are informed about their child’s healthcare needs and can work together to make informed decisions.

Respect Each Other’s Views 

Parents may have different views on their child’s healthcare needs, which can lead to disagreements. Both parents must respect each other’s opinions and work together to find a solution that is in the best interest of their child, which may involve compromising on specific aspects of the healthcare plan. It is important to remember that both parents want what is best for their child and focus on finding a solution that works for everyone involved.

Keep the Child’s Best Interests in Mind 

When making healthcare decisions for their child, divorced parents should always consider their child’s best interests; this may involve putting aside personal differences and working together to make decisions that are in the child’s best interest. Prioritizing the child’s health and well-being is more crucial than conflicts between the parents. By keeping the child’s best interests in mind, both parents can work together to provide the best possible healthcare for their child.

Involve Healthcare Providers 

Healthcare providers can be essential in coordinating healthcare for children of divorced parents. Parents should inform healthcare providers about their situation and ensure that all providers should know of the child’s healthcare plan. Healthcare providers can also serve as neutral parties to help parents resolve disagreements about their child’s healthcare. They can guide medical decisions and aid parents in understanding the options available for their child’s healthcare. By involving healthcare providers, both parents can access accurate medical information and expert advice, which can help ensure that their child receives the best possible healthcare.


Divorced parents face many challenges in ensuring that their children receive adequate healthcare. Effective communication and coordination are essential for meeting these challenges. By establishing clear communication channels, sharing important information, creating a healthcare plan, respecting each other’s views, keeping the child’s best interests in mind, and involving healthcare providers, divorced parents can work together to provide the best possible healthcare for their child. While it may be challenging to navigate, a child’s healthcare needs after a divorce, effective communication and coordination can make the process smoother for everyone involved.

In conclusion, divorced parents should prioritize their child’s health and well-being by working together to coordinate healthcare. Divorce parents can ensure that their child’s healthcare needs are met by establishing clear communication channels, sharing important information, creating a healthcare plan, respecting each other’s views, keeping the child’s best interests in mind, and involving healthcare providers. Divorce can be difficult for families, but with the right strategies in place, parents can work together to provide the best possible healthcare for their children.

If you want to learn more about coping with divorce as a family, kindly consider checking out these other articles at

You, Your Legal Rights, Your Legal Responsibilities and Co-Parenting in the UK

Co-Parenting in the UK

In the UK, parents have legal responsibilities as well as rights from the very moment they become parents. However, what many parents don’t understand is that those legal responsibilities and rights are maintained even if they are not the primary legal guardian. Not understanding your rights can complicate co-parenting so let’s take some time going over your legal rights, responsibilities (also known as parental responsibility) and how it applies to co-parenting in the UK.

What is Parental Responsibility?

In the UK, parental responsibility is a term that covers both the legal rights and responsibilities that parents have when it comes to their children. With parental responsibility, parents are required to cover two main roles for the child:

  1. Provide a home
  2. Protect and maintain

Protect and maintain covers a wide range of responsibilities that the child will need on the day to day. These are:

  1. Providing medical care and treatment
  2. Ensuring financial support of that child
  3. Disciplining the child
  4. Maintaining and caring for the child’s property
  5. Providing education

Another responsibility, which is not usually under consideration during separation and divorce is the naming of the child; however, there is a legal right to being able to agree to any name changes of the child at any time. 

Parental responsibility is having a say in how your child is raised while also needing to maintain the basic needs of your child. 

Who Does Parental Responsibility Pertain To?

First, all mothers have parental responsibility from the moment of birth. This is only relinquished through adoption, and rarely through court processes that prove abuse. Fathers, however, do not always have parental responsibility, but there are a few ways that they can gain parental responsibility. These are:

  1. Being named as the father (or other parent) on the birth certificate
  2. Marriage to the child’s mother

It should be noted that where you are in the UK can affect the father’s parental responsibility. In the UK and Wales, if the parents are married when the child is born or adopted, they both have parental responsibility. In Scotland, this applies to children born or adopted when partners are married or get married after the child is born. And in Northern Ireland, it applies to marriage after the child is born only if the father resides in Northern Ireland at the time of the marriage.

One thing that should be mentioned is that same sex partners who are in a civil partnership at the time of the child’s birth have equal parental responsibility. However, if they were not, they would have to apply for parental responsibility. In the UK, parental responsibility can be applied for by fathers, same sex partners, and stepfathers/parents. In addition, there can be more than two adults who have parental responsibility of a child. 

If the mother is unwilling to agree to parental responsibility with her partner, it can be processed through a court order.

What is Parental Responsibility in Separation and Divorce?

Now that we understand parental responsibility and how it applies to fathers and mothers, it is important to quickly understand UK law around divorce and children

First, regardless of parental responsibility, historically, mothers often have more legal rights over the children than fathers do. This is because, traditionally, mothers have been seen as primary caregivers to their children and while these roles have been changing over the last few decades, fathers with equal parental responsibility may not be seen as equal caregivers.

Second, during court proceedings, courts tend to rule in favour of the mother for primary residence but this is not always the case.

Third, even if the primary home is not with the father, this does not diminish the legal rights of the father. Generally, day to day decisions based on care are the responsibility of the mother when she is the primary caregiver; however, major decisions have to be agreed upon by both parents.

Finally, if the primary home is with the father, it is important to note that a mother cannot be denied contact with her child or be denied the right to make decisions about her child. The only time a mother does not have that legal responsibility is, again, if abuse or neglect is proven or if the mother gives up her parental rights. 

What Does This Mean for Co-Parenting

Now that we know a lot of the legalities, what does that mean for co-parenting your child? There are a few things that you should know.

  1. You have parental responsibility for your child, regardless of if you live with them or not. This means that all major decisions about your child’s life must include you and your ex-partner.
  2. Routine decisions do not need permissions from both parents. While it makes it easier to have the permission of both, which makes the 2Houses app an essential tool for co-parenting, only one parent needs to give permission. For instance, if your child always spent Wednesday evenings with his grandparents, you would not need to get permission to continue this practice after the divorce.
  3. Decisions should be made in writing. This is applied to major decisions. If you want to move abroad with your child, both parents have to agree to it in writing. These documents can be stored on the 2Houses app.
  4. Child support is one of the responsibilities of parental responsibility and you and your ex-partner will have to discuss what those responsibilities will look like.

In the end, co-parenting can be agreed upon by court order. However, it is good for you to talk to your ex-partner of how you will split up the responsibilities, where the children will reside, visitation schedules and the finer details. Both parents have rights and responsibilities and the sooner they can come to an agreement on how that will be split after the divorce, the sooner life can return to a routine that where your children will thrive. 

Blended Families: Navigating the Complexities of Blending Families After Divorce, Including Step-Parenting, New Siblings, and Competing Loyalties

Step-Parenting, New Siblings, and Competing Loyalties

Blending families after a divorce can be a complex and challenging process. However, it is increasingly common in today’s society. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, over 16% of children in the United States live in blended families.

The new family dynamic can be challenging, especially when step-parenting, new siblings, and competing loyalties are involved. However, building a strong and loving blended family is possible with the right mindset and approach. 

In this article, we’ll explore some tips and strategies for navigating the complexities of blended families after divorce, focusing on the USA’s divorced/separated parents.

Tips To Use in Adapting to New Family Dynamics 

Blending families after a divorce is a journey that requires patience, resilience, and understanding. It is a time of transition that involves getting to know new family members, learning to adapt to new family dynamics, and navigating new challenges. Below are a few tips to follow;

  • Patience

Patience is one of the most important things to remember when blending families after divorce. It takes time to build relationships and create a sense of family. It’s essential to be open to the different personalities and dynamics that come with blending families and to be flexible and understanding when things don’t go according to plan.

  • Establishing Clear Boundaries

Another vital aspect of blending families after divorce is establishing clear boundaries. This involves setting household rules, expectations, and responsibilities and ensuring everyone is on the same page. Clear communication is critical when establishing limitations, and ensuring everyone’s voices are heard is essential.

  • Making Adjustments

In addition to communication, it’s also important to be open to feedback and willing to make adjustments when necessary. Blended families often comprise people from different backgrounds with different values and beliefs. Listening to different perspectives and adjusting your approach can help create a more harmonious family environment.

  • Seeking Support

In addition to these tips, seeking support when needed is important. Blending families after divorce can be challenging, and it’s important to have a support system to help you navigate the ups and downs. This might include talking to a therapist or counselor, attending a support group, or contacting other blended families for advice and support.

Challenges to Face When Blending Families After Divorce 

Blending Families After Divorce

1. Step-parenting

Step-parenting can be incredibly challenging when blending families after divorce. Step-parents may struggle to find their place in the family or feel like they are stepping on the toes of the biological parent. Step-parents must establish a positive relationship with their step-children while respecting the biological parent’s role in the family. This may involve finding common ground, setting boundaries, and finding ways to build trust and respect. 

Here are some tips to help step-parents and children build positive relationships:

  • Build trust: Step-parents need to build trust with their step-children. This can be done by being consistent, following promises, and showing interest in their lives.
  • Respect boundaries: It’s essential to respect the boundaries of the children and their biological parents. Stepping in too quickly or trying to discipline the children can create tension and conflict.
  • Communicate openly: Communication is critical in any relationship but is imperative in blended families. Encourage open communication between all family members and ensure everyone feels heard and valued.

2. New Siblings 

Blended families after divorce can also involve the arrival of new siblings. This can be challenging for the latest and existing siblings, as they may need to learn to share their parents’ attention and resources. Parents must take the time to help their children adjust to the new family dynamics and encourage positive sibling relationships.

Here are some tips to help children adjust to new siblings:

  • Encourage bonding: Encourage siblings to spend time together and get to know each other. This can be done through family activities, game nights, or outings.
  • Respect individuality: It’s essential to recognize and respect the uniqueness of each child. Allow each child to have their interests and hobbies and make sure they feel valued for who they are.
  • Avoid comparisons: Comparing children to each other can create tension and resentment. Instead, focus on each child’s strengths and encourage them to work together as a team.
  • Blended families: Navigating the complexities of blending families after divorce, including step-parenting, new siblings, and competing loyalties

3. Competing Loyalties

Competing loyalties can also be a challenge when blending families after divorce. Children may feel caught between their loyalty to their biological parents and their loyalty to their new family members. Parents must create a safe and supportive environment where children feel free to express their feelings and concerns and provide reassurance and support as required.

Here are some tips to help manage competing loyalties:

  • Encourage communication: Encourage open communication between all family members. This can help address any concerns or feelings of tension that may arise.
  • Respect boundaries: It’s essential to respect the boundaries of the children and their biological parents. Allow them to maintain their relationship while building a new one with the step-parent.
  • Create new traditions: Create new family traditions that involve everyone in the family. This can help create a sense of unity and belonging.

Benefits of Blended Families 

Blending families can be challenging for everyone involved but can also be a positive experience. Here are some benefits of blended families:

1. Increased Support 

Blended families can provide children with increased emotional and financial support. Children may have more adults who care for them and can provide support in times of need.

2. New Perspectives

Blended families bring together people from different backgrounds and experiences, providing opportunities to learn and grow from each other’s views.

3. Resilience

Blended families have the opportunity to develop stability and strength by overcoming challenges and working through difficulties.

Final Thoughts

Blending families after divorce is a challenging but rewarding process. You can build a strong and loving blended family by being patient, establishing clear boundaries, being open to feedback, and seeking support when needed. 

It’s important to remember that every family is unique, and what works for one family may not work for another. Your blended family can become a strong and loving unit with time, patience, and a positive attitude.