These days it seems like everyone knows someone who's "best friends with their ex." In movies about divorced parents, they almost always end up working together, as a united team, or even getting back together. Most divorced celebrity couples amicably raise their kids in the public eye, too, some even living together or taking vacations as a family. These fairy tale-like scenarios fail to acknowledge the complexity of co-parenting relationships, though. So, honestly, people need to stop romanticizing co-parenting, because it's usually nothing like the movies.
Co-parenting with someone I hate, in all honestly, sucks. Co-parenting with someone I hate, while everyone tells me that I should be kinder to and more forgiving of that person, sucks even more. People say things like, "Why can't you be friends?" and, "You need to forgive and forget, for the kids' sake," like these things are easy. The truth of the matter is, of course, they're not easy at all. These expectations make me seriously feel like sh*t, and at a time when I'm trying really hard to figure things out. The last thing I need is a constant reminder that the inability to work effectively together with my ex, is one of the reasons why we split up in the first place.
There's nothing easy about divorce or separation, especially when you have kids together. Romanticizing these relationships is unrealistic and unfair to parents who have to navigate really difficult situations and be the best parents they can be. It's also unfair to their kids, who don't always understand why the divorce or break up happened in the first place, and want desperately for there to be a fairy tale ending. We've got to stop romanticizing co-parenting, because it's so not magical and so not easy most of the time.