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Amid Custody Struggles, Here’s How Jeff Lewis and Gage Edward Can Keep Things Running Smoothly for Daughter Monroe

Jeff Lewis and Gage Edward are starting to get into it over daughter Monroe — here's what a therapist has to say about these types of situations.

Jeff Lewis, Gage Edward, Monroe custody

Former Flipping Out couple Jeff Lewis and Gage Edward are running into trouble when it comes to successfully co-parenting their 2-year-old daughter, Monroe.

Following their break-up earlier this year, the two have met with lawyers to try to sort out a 50/50 custody agreement, but they can't really resolve things because they're still fighting

On his Radio Andy show, Jeff Lewis Live, this week, Jeff said that a recent custody meeting didn't go the way he had planned. He thought it was going to be about future custody arrangements, but instead was just about plans for the week ahead, and custody was "never resolved.”

Now, Jeff says Gage is getting nasty, Gage is firing off legal letters to Jeff and the whole thing is at a standstill. 

New York City-based therapist Tanya Koifman, LCSW, has helped couples navigate through tough custody arrangements.

"When parents are separating or divorcing and there is a baby involved, it is important to keep structures and consistency in place that help babies and young children," she told Personal Space. "For example, in both parents’ homes naptime should be around the same time. Routine, structure, and predictability in their day help kids have a sense of comfort and security, and this is even more important to stick to when splitting their time in two homes.

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Pure Joy. Happy Father’s Day.

A post shared by Gage Edward (@mrgageedward) on

"Also having the child’s favorite or special things in each home can help create a sense of ease and security. For example, if they have a favorite bedtime book or blanket, it can be helpful to have one in each home," Koifman said. "These small details can make a world of difference for young children."

She added it's also crucial for both parents to "commit to positive talk in each home."

"Never talk negatively about your ex in front of the child," she said. "Even if they are too young to understand every word you are saying, babies and toddlers can pick up on tone of voice, body language, and can sense when things are off. This can negatively affect them, and create anxiety."

If there is a parent that the baby sees less often, be considerate of that.

"That parent’s go-to strategy is sometimes to make the visit extra fun and jam-pack their time with trips and activities," Koifman said. "While these things are great, moderation is also important to consider. It is healthy for kids to do everyday kind of things with each of their parents such as rest and cuddle time, reading time, playing together, nap time, etc. ... Overall, a respectful and unified parenting approach, where the needs of the child are number one is key for the child’s well-being."

Jeff and Gage did manage to have a nice co-parenting moment, coming together on Father's Day with Monroe. Here's to more of that.

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