If you and your child's other parent are going through a divorce, you may worry about how your child will adapt to the new custody and visitation schedule. Divorces can be challenging transitions for children of any age. However, you and your ex-spouse can take several measures to improve this process for your child, starting with your child custody agreement.
Read on to learn how you can use your child custody agreement to ease the transition for your child or children. Then contact our team at DiPietro Law Group to schedule your consultation with our family law attorney.
Create a Routine for Your Child
Children thrive on routines, but transitioning to a shared custody arrangement can inhibit previously established schedules. One way to ease the transition for your child is to keep routines as consistent as possible across both parenting plans.
For instance, you and your child's other parent can establish general routines your child will follow at both houses. Your routine may include waking up and putting the child to bed at the same time or requiring them to complete chores or homework before playing with toys.
Establishing this routine in the child custody agreement can encourage you and the other parent to stick to it throughout your shared custody. It can also allow your child to know what to expect and avoid favoring one household over the other.
Consider "Parallel Parenting"
If you and the child's other parents are on bad terms, you may have trouble "co-parenting" and consulting each other throughout the shared custody. Instead, you can consider implementing a "parallel parenting" plan. This plan can improve your child's transition to shared custody without requiring you and your ex-spouse to consult on every issue.
Parallel parenting requires both parents to consult on major decisions but enables them to make smaller decisions independently. For example, each parent can determine what the child will eat and how much TV time they can have each day.
Parallel parenting can reduce tension between you and your ex-spouse that may place stress on your child.
Prioritize Your Child's Best Interest
Completing child custody agreements can sometimes be stressful and overwhelming. You may be tempted to create a complicated plan to ensure an even split between both parents, such as requiring the child to spend every other week with you.
While you and your ex-spouse should both be satisfied with the child custody agreement, you must also place your child's best interests at the forefront. Your child may do better with a schedule that enables them to spend long stretches of time with each parent rather than switching houses every week. They may adjust better when staying in their current school district for the entire school year instead of moving to a new one.
Divorce can be hard on children, but prioritizing their needs in your child custody agreement can help ease the transition. If you need help creating an arrangement you and your spouse agree on, contact our DiPietro Law Group at 888-530-4374 for assistance.