While divorce is a complicated, sticky mess in many instances, it becomes even more challenging when children are involved. The matter of where they will live and who they will live will become very critical. Parents often both feel passionate about the subject, which can further complicate matters. Regardless of what stage you are currently in with regards to settling custody with your ex, follow these tips to arrive at an arrangement that is best for your children.
Discuss the Arrangements Openly with Your Ex
Regardless of how stressed or strained your relationship with your ex is, it is important to reach across blocked lines and communicate openly about what is best for the kids. Consider sending a text message rather than calling directly to arrange a meeting. Avoid being negative or accusatory, and simply say that you want to create an arrangement that is in everyone’s interest.
Plan for Holidays and Vacations
While you definitely need to think through the daily custody arrangements, keep in mind that parents also want to see their children on holidays and for extra time on vacations. Many parents can manage to work out agreements on their own in these areas, and this can prevent the decision from being made by the court system. One common way to resolve these issues is for holidays to be rotated each year and for each parent to have the children with them for one solid month each summer.
Think Through Finances
Unless both spouses are independently financially successful, the matter of finances and the children’s overall welfare should be considered. If you are involved in a situation where one parent makes significantly more money than the other one, both parents should still have equal opportunity to spend with the children. There are exceptions, such as with abuse. To compensate for the financial matters, one parent may agree to provide some funds to pay for children’s expenses. Perhaps one parent will be responsible for the children’s medical expenses and clothing. Consider talking with a lawyer from somewhere like The Gil Law Firm.
Ask the Children for Input
While it is important for both parents to reach an amicable solution, it is also important for the children to feel comfortable with the situation. If your children are old enough, run your plan by them for input. It may be difficult to reach a solution that everyone is happy with. However, your children may bring up valid points that the two parents have not yet considered.
Child custody is rarely a simple matter to handle, but you do not need to make it more emotionally taxing than it needs to be. Use these tips to work toward a positive arrangement.
Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure. You can connect with her on Facebook right here and Twitter right here.