You do not want your relationship with your children to change because of divorce. In fact, you want to improve your bond. How does your parenting plan help meet this desire?
Psychology Today explores the vital elements of a parenting plan. Keep these ideas in mind as you work with your soon-to-be-former spouse to care for your shared children after your divorce.
Think about speaking with a therapist
A therapist may help you in multiple ways during a difficult chapter of your life. Specifically, mental health specialists with experience treating children may offer you research and insights regarding child development and children of divorced parents. You may use these findings to fine-tune your parenting plan and better understand what your children need most right now.
Include exceptions on your parenting schedule
While deciding when you and the other parent go “on duty” or “off duty” when you have custody of your kids, consider your shared children’s ages and their school and extracurricular activities schedules. Also, think about how holidays, school trips, birthdays, family functions and summer vacations could alter your schedule.
Do not forget special considerations
Do you or the other parent want to limit how much time your kids spend on their phones, video game consoles, computers or other electronic devices? Perhaps you would rather your shared children not engage in specific religious teachings or school activities. Think about how to express your concerns to the other parent respectfully and how they may affect your parenting schedule.
Parenting plans require a lot of time, attention and dedication. Hopefully, you, your former spouse and your children find a rhythm that supports everyone’s shared and separate needs.