If your anger feels overwhelming, looking at a photograph of your child may help you calm down.You may never completely lose all of your resentment or bitterness about your break up, but what you can do is compartmentalize those feelings and remind yourself that they are your issues, not your child's.

Before contact with your ex, ask yourself how your talk will affect your child, and resolve to conduct yourself with dignity.

Make your child the focal point of every discussion you have with your ex-partner.

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Your child has a right to a relationship with their other parent that is free of your influence.

Peaceful, consistent, and purposeful communication with your ex is essential to the success of co-parenting—even though it may seem absolutely impossible. Think about communication with your ex as having the highest purpose: your child’s well-being.It’s okay to be hurt and angry, but your feelings don’t have to dictate your behavior. Friends, therapists, or even a loving pet can all make good listeners when you need to get negative feelings off your chest.Instead, let what’s best for your kids—you working cooperatively with the other parent—motivate your actions. Exercise can also be a healthy outlet for letting off steam. If you feel angry or resentful, try to remember why you need to act with purpose and grace: your child’s best interests are at stake.The key to successful co-parenting is to separate the personal relationship with your ex from the co-parenting relationship.It may be helpful to start thinking of your relationship with your ex as a completely new one—one that is entirely about the well-being of your children, and not about either of you.Joint custody arrangements can be exhausting, infuriating, and fraught with stress.