Last week, I wrote about the benefits of making a personal commitment to treating your spouse well, even if your marriage ends.  Many of the people I’ve interviewed who have decent divorces described their spouses as friends first.  They entered the marriage with a genuine regard for the other, and this sense of fellowship made it easier for them to focus on creating better lives for both, unwed—rather than spinning out into anger and law suits.

For some, raising children is an intensely important shared interest that spurs cooperation, much like a pre-existing friendship.  Prioritizing their mutual interest in raising happy, healthy children helps many couples transition into a friendly co-parenting relationship.