Divorcing parents can become so focused on what they are going through that they forget about the kids who are watching their every move. When you are going through a divorce, you have to take steps that protect your children and set a good example as adults. There are several things that you should avoid as you are going through the divorce and child custody negotiation process.
First, you shouldn't adopt a "me versus you" mindset. Children want both parents to be at important events. They want both to be there for them when they are doing something they feel passionate about. When you decide that you are going to work with your ex, you can extend an olive branch that enables you to parent together with less conflict and stress.
Second, your children know when you are saying something negative about your ex. Instead of falling into the habit of badmouthing them, make an effort to encourage your child to have a positive relationship with them. They need to know that you support them in this endeavor and want them to enjoy spending time with both parents.
Third, your children shouldn't ever be used as messengers during the divorce. Not only is relaying messages too great of a responsibility for them, but it can also put them in an uncomfortable position because they might feel as though they have to choose a parent. It is always better to communicate directly with your ex. Try to do this in private without the kids around if there are contentious matters to handle.
It is a good idea to have a solid parenting plan in place so that you can focus on raising your children. The plan will outline the basic information about what is allowed and not allowed. Having clear provisions in place can help prevent misunderstandings and conflict.