The 10 Best Books about Co-Parenting after a Divorce

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Co-parenting after a divorce – even if the divorce is amicable – is difficult. Here are some of our favorite books about navigating the challenges of co-parenting:

Mindful Co-Parenting: A Child-Friendly Path through Divorce, by Dr. Jeremy S. Gaies and Dr. James B. Morris Jr. 

mindful-co-parenting book

Mindful Co-Parenting provides divorced parents a practical way through the process that protects their children. In this compact, step-by-step guide, written in a supportive yet direct style, clinical psychologists Jeremy S. Gaies, Psy.D., and James B. Morris Jr., Ph.D., identify what matters most to kids and describe the importance of parents being mindful of their children’s needs and wants. Starting with the question of whether or not divorce is the best option for your family, the book walks you through the process, from choosing the most child-friendly divorce proceedings, to navigating co-parenting after the papers are signed, to handling the future challenges of step-parenting and other issues that may arise.

By simply paying attention and planning ahead, you and your ex can reduce the potential negative effects of divorce on your family. Learn how to create a comprehensive parenting plan that can begin to establish a new norm for the benefit of your family’s new future.

 

The Co-Parenting Handbook: Raising Well-Adjusted and Resilient Kids from Little Ones to Young Adults through Divorce or Separation, by Karen Bonnell with Kristin Little

the co-parenting handbook book

The Co-Parenting Handbook helps parents confidently take on the challenges of guiding children through divorce or separation and raising them skillfully in two homes.

Addressing parents’ questions about the emotional impact of separation, conflict, grief, and recovery, the authors provide a road map for all family members to safely navigate through separation/divorce and beyond. Through tested and reassuring guidance, parents will discover how to move from angry, hurt partners to constructive, successful co-parents who are able to put their children’s needs first. Chock-full of strategies to help resolve day-to-day issues, create boundaries, and establish guidelines, this handbook will help ensure kids and co-parents thrive.

 

Joint Custody with a Jerk: Raising a Child with an Uncooperative Ex, by Julie A. Ross and Judy Corcoran

joing custody with a jerk book

From parenting expert Julie A. Ross and writer Judy Corcoran comes the fully revised Joint Custody with a Jerk, the highly praised guide to co-parenting with an uncooperative ex-spouse, now updated to provide real solutions to tough family issues.

It’s a fact that parenting is hard enough in a family where two parents love and respect each other… After divorce, when the respect has diminished and the love has often turned to intense dislike, co-parenting can be nearly impossible, driving one or both parents to the brink of insanity. Joint Custody with a Jerk offers many proven communication techniques that help you deal with your difficult ex-husband or ex-wife. By outlining common problems and teaching tools to examine your own role in these sticky situations, this book conveys strategies for effective mediation that are easy to apply, sensible, timely and innovative.

This revised edition of a bestselling classic sheds light on how today’s digital forms of communication can both hurt and help in custody conflicts, and offers updated information throughout that brings age-old issues into the present day.

 

Co-Parenting with a Toxic Ex: What to Do When Your Ex-Spouse Tries to Turn the Kids Against You, by Dr. Amy J. L. Baker and Paul R. Fine

co-parenting with a toxic ex book

During and after a difficult divorce, it’s easy for your relationship with your kids to become strained—especially if you are dealing with a toxic ex who bad-mouths you in front of your children, accuses you of being a bad parent, and even attempts to “replace” you with a new partner in your children’s lives. Your children may become confused, conflicted, angry, anxious, or depressed—and you may feel powerless. But there is help.

In this guide, you’ll discover a positive parenting approach to dealing with a hostile ex-spouse. You’ll learn the best ways to protect your children from painful loyalty conflicts, how to avoid parental alienation syndrome, and techniques for talking to your children in a way that fosters honesty and trust. Co-parenting with a toxic ex can be challenging, but with the right tools you can protect your kids and make your relationship with them stronger than ever.

 

Co-Parenting Works! Helping Your Children Thrive After Divorce, by Tammy Daughtry

co-parenting works book

What if your child’s “life-after-divorce” could be better than you’ve hoped for? As the post-divorce dust settles, your child’s chances of leading a healthy, successful life are directly linked to how you and your former spouse relate. So instead of listening to statistics, read this book to discover real world co-parenting strategies from author, counselor, and co-parent Tammy Daughtry. Discover how you can make positive co-parenting work for you and your child by: • Understanding how today’s actions will affect your child in five, ten, and twenty years • Teaming with your child’s co-parent to develop strategies in the best interest of your children • Helping your child feel at ease in both homes • Increasing your child’s self-esteem while minimizing anxiety • Integrating stepparents into your co-parenting team Co-parenting isn’t easy. But with these strategies for success, you’ll be prepared to create an enjoyable childhood and a healthy upbringing that will impact your child for a lifetime. Take heart—the future can be better and brighter than you’ve dared to hope.

 

How to Talk to Your Kids about Your Divorce: Healthy, Effective Communication Techniques for Your Changing Family, by Dr. Samantha Rodman

how to talk to your kids about your divorce book

Written by Dr. Samantha Rodman, founder of DrPsychMom.com, How to Talk to Your Kids about Your Divorce teaches you how to raise a happy, thriving family in a changing environment. Each page offers expert advice for discussing your decision in healthy and effective ways, including breaking the initial news, fostering an open dialogue, and ensuring that your children’s emotional needs are met throughout your separation. With Dr. Rodman’s proven communication techniques, you will:

  • Initiate honest conversations where your children can express their thoughts
  • Discuss divorce-related topics and answer questions in age-appropriate ways
  • Validate your children’s feelings, making them feel acknowledged and secure
  • Strengthen and deepen your relationship with your kids

Whether you’re raising toddlers, school-aged children, or young adults, How to Talk to Your Kids About Your Divorce will help your kids feel heard, valued, and loved during this difficult time.

 

Putting Children First: Proven Parenting Strategies for Helping Children Thrive Through Divorce, by Dr. JoAnne Pedro-Caroll

putting children first book

An internationally renowned authority on children and divorce reveals the latest research-based strategies for helping children survive and thrive before, during, and long after their parents divorce.

The breakup of a family can have an enduring impact on children. But as Dr. JoAnne Pedro-Carroll explains with clarity and compassion in this powerful book, parents can positively alter the immediate and long-term effects of divorce on their children. The key is proven, emotionally intelligent parenting strategies that promote children’s emotional health, resilience, and ability to lead satisfying lives.

Over the past three decades, Pedro-Carroll has worked with families in transition, conducted research, and developed and directed award- winning, court-endorsed programs that have helped thousands of families navigate divorce and its aftermath. Now she shares practical, research-based advice that helps parents:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of what their children are experiencing
  • Develop emotionally intelligent parenting strategies with the critical combination of boundless love and appropriate limits on behavior
  • Reduce conflict with a former spouse and protect children from conflict’s damaging effects
  • Learn what recent brain research reveals about stress and children’s developing capabilities

Filled with the voices and drawings of children and the stories of families, Putting Children First delivers a positive vision for a future of hope and healing.

 

Co-parenting 101: Helping Your Kids Thrive in Two Households after Divorce, by Deesha Philyaw and Michael D. Thomas

co-parenting 101 book

A successful co-parenting relationship is as vital to your child’s well-being and health as nutritious food or proper exercise. Research, anecdotal evidence, and plain common sense all point to the fact that children are happier, healthier, and better adjusted when both of their parents play an active role in their lives. Studies also show that the trauma children experience in the wake of a divorce or separation can be lessened when they see their parents getting along. Kids whose parents successfully co-parent feel more secure than those who have limited or no connection to one of their parents post divorce.

Co-Parenting 101 is based on the premise that co-parenting is a must, not an option. The involvement of both parents―not just the primary guardian―is the cornerstone of successful co-parenting. This is the first book written by a formerly married couple for whom co parenting is central to their day to day lives, and it offers a comprehensive, personal, and upfront look at how to effectively raise kids with an ex-spouse.

Authors Deesha Philyaw and Michael D. Thomas, the creators of the popular co-parenting website, co-parenting101.org, share their own experiences raising their children together, as well as provide professional advice from co-parenting experts. Through practical tips combined with expert parental strategies, this book a great resource for divorced parents with children.

For parents, less time stressed out about legal wrangling means more time to be fully present and engaged with the children. By learning to put their animosity aside, parents can focus on putting their kids first.

 

The Truth about Children and Divorce: Dealing with the Emotions so You and Your Children Can Thrive, by Dr. Robert Emery

truth about children and divorce

Nationally recognized expert Robert Emery applies his twenty-five years of experience as a researcher, therapist, and mediator to offer parents a new road map to divorce. Dr. Emery shows how our powerful emotions and the way we handle them shape how we divorce—and whether our children suffer or thrive in the long run. His message is hopeful, yet realistic—divorce is invariably painful, but parents can help promote their children’s resilience. With compassion and authority, Dr. Emery explains:

• Why it is so hard to really make divorce work
• How anger and fighting can keep people from really separating
• Why legal matters should be one of the last tasks
• Why parental love—and limit setting—can be the best “therapy” for kids
• How to talk to children, create workable parenting schedules, and more

 

Mom’s House, Dad’s House: Making two homes for your child, by Dr. Isolina Ricci

Mom's house, Dad's house book

Internationally renowned therapist, family expert and mediator Isolina Ricci, Ph.D. presents this definitive and newly updated guide to divorce and making shared custody work for parents and children.

The ground-breaking classic, Mom’s House, Dad’s House, has become the standard for two generations of divorcing parents, and includes examples, self-tests, checklists, tools, and guidelines to help separated moms and dads with the legal, emotional, and financial issues they will encounter as they work to create happy and stable homes.

This comprehensive guide looks anew at the needs of all family members with creative options and common-sense advice, including:

* The map to a “decent divorce” and two happy homes
* Helping children of divorce with age-specific advice
* Negotiating Parental Agreements and custody arrangements
* Breaking away from “negative intimacy” with a difficult ex-husband or ex-wife
* Sidestepping destructive myths about divorce (and marriage)
* Handling long-distance parenting and parenting alone

With Mom’s House, Dad’s House, parents will learn how to help their children heal and find a sense of continuity, security, and stability throughout the divorce process and in any custody situation.

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