Co-parent communication in an Emergency
Co-parent communication in an emergency is the last thing anyone going through a divorce wants to face. However, life happens and emergency situations occasionally arise. When they do, how well you communicate is critical. Here are some helpful guidelines to keep in mind when coping with a co-parenting emergency.
Remember how to A.C.T
A.C.T. Is a simple acronym to help you remember how to communicate with your co-parent. The information should be Accurate, Complete, and Timely. This means, if your child has to go to the emergency room because they may have a broken leg, you A.C.T. Let your co-parent know exactly what is going on. How serious is the situation? What hospital are you going to? what has the doctor said, if anything? It is also important that you make every good effort to reach your co-parent as soon as possible. If you always A.C.T when communicating with your co-parent you have served your child well.
The Golden Rule (still) Applies
We all learned the golden rule as children, however, when we decide to separate from a spouse amnesia sets in. Understandably, your relationship with your co-parent is strained. However, using ANY situation involving your child to get in a jab, is inappropriate. Treat your co-parent with respect and share with them all information you would want to be shared with you.
Staying focused in a high-stress situation is practically a magic trick. However, you and your child will benefit from this simple, yet challenging, tool. Set aside any hostility or prior bad experiences you have had with your co-parent and focus on the emergency at hand. Evaluate first what your child needs and second what you can do to de-escalate the situation. When you feel those emotional responses creeping in, try to redirect your attention to what is right in front of you.
Take a chill pill
Many of us have a natural inclination to overreact when our sweet, preciouses baby is hurt. These feelings, while natural, are not helpful to your child. A bicycle accident may leave your little one in tears but is no cause for panic. Get your child to the care of the appropriate medical professional as soon as possible, then in a timely fashion contact your co-parent. No one is helped by you losing you –ish in an emergency.
Put the CO-operate in Co-Parent
Should you find yourself on the other end of an emergency phone call from your co-parent all of the above still applies! Don’t begin berating the co-parent or peppering them with endless questions. Find out how serious the situation is and when and where you can see your child. If your co-parent has questions about your child’s allergies or the insurance, cooperate! Don’t be sarcastic or give them flack for not knowing the answers themselves. Give them the information they need to help your child immediately!
Utilizing these guidelines in an emergency will save stress, heartache, and could even save your child’s life.