valentines candyValentine’s Day can be a time for the ultimate show of faith in co-parenting. The dreaded room party for the kids. Who should attend? Mom? Partner? Other Mom? Grandparents? New girlfriend? What if the Mom doesn’t like her ex’s new girlfriend and gets mad that she’s coming to the school function?

As the song says, to analyze anything, you have to start at the beginning. So who has the right to attend the school party? If there are custody orders in place and the parents are joint managing conservators, then both parents have the right to attend. If one parent doesn’t have the right to attend, then they shouldn’t. But that is unusual. If both parents have the right to attend, then both parents have the right to bring friends and family with them.

If there is no custody order, then the parents have the same and equal right to attend school functions and bring family and friends.

The most important thing to remember is to not make the child uncomfortable. Even if someone shows up that isn’t welcome by all present, act gracious and welcoming for the child. The child is probably excited about the party and his or her friends. The child is probably excited to have all of his family unit present. If one person there acts uncomfortable or mad, it could ruin it for the child.

Just always remember in any situation involving a dispute over a child or child custody, put the child’s interests first. Ask what would the child want you to do in this situation? That should help you come up with the best response.