Creating a Parenting Schedule for the Whole Family
The best Colorado parenting plans are those which have considered the needs of all the individuals involved. When parents divorce and establish two separate homes, the division creates difficulty and stress for the entire family. For the two former spouses, a divorce means that even though the legality of their personal relationship has ended, they are still bound by their obligation and responsibility to care for the children they share. For the children involved, it means living in two separate homes and navigating the stress of having to go back and forth between their parents. All family members will experience the pain of a divorce or legal separation, and when creating a parenting plan, it is important to consider the needs of the whole family.
Things to Consider:
Crafting a Parenting Agreement Will Require Compromise
It is important for both parents to realize that the crafting of a parenting schedule will require compromise, and compromise is an essential aspect of any child custody visitation plan. While each parent should be considerate of each other’s needs, the most important aspect of the parenting plan is to place your children’s well-being at the forefront of the plan. Keeping this in mind, parents should strive to work together to create a workable plan and make the transition for your children as seamless as possible.
The Distance Between the Parents
A good parenting schedule should also consider the distance between the homes of both parents. Generally, the shorter the distance, the better for the children. When parents live in close proximity to one another, their parenting exchanges can occur with greater frequency, and the children can transit easily from one parent to the other every few days. But when the parents live a greater distance from one another, it may require that children live with one parent during the week and live with the other parent on the weekends and some of their holiday vacations. This does not mean that the parent that lives a greater distance away, cannot do his or her share of effective parenting. The parents can still work together to decide on important issues concerning the children: schools, education, social interaction, health care, and religion.
The Age of the Children
An effective parenting schedule for divorced parents should also take into account the age of the children. While older children may be more comfortable going back and forth between their parents’ homes, very young children usually require the consistency of living with a primary parent most of the time. There has been a considerable amount of research that indicates that environmental consistency is important for the development of young children. When young children are involved, their best interests may require that they live primarily with one parent, but still have frequent and meaningful visits with the other parent. Recent research has also indicated that young children can create a strong bond and a healthy relationship with the non-custodial parent if they are able to see and spend time with their other parent frequently and on a consistent basis.
The Relationship Between the Parents
Parenting schedules should also consider the interaction between the parents. When parents have a civil and professional relationship with one another, a parenting schedule can comprise face to face interactions in each other’s homes. But if their relationship ended badly and they still harbor negative feelings for one another, it is often in the best interests of the children to have parental exchanges occur in neutral and public places.
Working with a Family Law Attoney
Creating an effective and workable parenting schedule can be complicated, but Elissa Bercovitz has had over 20 years of domestic relations experience working with families. She can create a parenting plan for you that is tailored to your needs and the needs of your family. She can also help you to create a custody schedule that will avoid problems in the future. If you are considering a divorce or separation, and you are a parent of young children, schedule a free consultation now. Contact Elissa Bercovitz today at 303 803 1678