It is sometimes trite to think about the spirit of goodwill during the Christmas season and the making of New Year’s resolutions for the coming year.

For those who have experienced relationship breakdowns in the past year, this is an opportune time to reflect on life over the past year and how you might make a fresh start in 2014. Why not think about your role as a parent and how co-parenting and better communication can occur for the benefit of everyone?

Co-parenting is a child centered process where parents work together in a cooperative manner for the benefit of the children. This can sometimes involve having standard household to ensure that children have consistency.

You and your former partner’s emotional relationship has ended. However, your relationship as parents will continues. Your children will benefit from seeing their parents having civil conversations, going to social events together and participating other important events.

If you have experienced communication issues, consider a post separation parenting course with Centacare or Relationships Australia. These courses will allow you to work on your communication strategies and ways to help you and your former partner work towards building resilient children.

Modern technology can also help assist in cooperative sharing of information relevant to the children. You might want to consider things like:

1. using Google Drive or Evernote to share photographs, school reports, permission notes or school requirements/book lists for the New Year;
2. using Google Calendar or a shared calendar in iCloud to share important dates, events or holiday times. These applications are free and can be used across mobile devices such as smart phones or tablets;
3. using the web site https://www.ourchildren.com.au/ for a low fee of $99.00 per year. This site also provides a single email address that can be given to a school or other service providers which then sends emails directly to both parents automatically.

The Christmas and New Year period can be a stressful time for separated families and perhaps some of these ideas may lead to a better and brighter 2014.