Parents in Connecticut who are going through a separation should spend some time creating a detailed written child custody plan. Even if parents are on the same page at the start of a divorce or separation, feelings may change as parents begin experiencing some of the difficulties of sharing custody, such as personal or work emergencies during custody days. Parents should also agree to some ground rules that can make the co-parenting process easier for their children.
Coming up with a method of communication
It is in the best interest of children of a divorce for parents to get along and communicate frequently regarding the child’s health, schooling, and other areas of importance. Parents should also be considerate and give the other parent advance notice whenever possible if a custody schedule needs to be altered temporarily. It helps to keep in mind that joint custody is about the child, not about the parents; even a subpar spouse can be a good parent who deserves to spend time with his or her children. If it is too difficult to interact with an ex-spouse in person or on the phone, parents should come up with another method of communicating, such as chatting online, texting, or using a shared custody calendar.
Involving children in a healthy way
In no event should children be made privy to disputes between their parents. Children should have good relationships with both parents, and it can confuse children or hurt their own self-image if their parent is being put down by the other. Though kids should be shielded from the dirty relationship details, they should be given a chance to voice their feelings about their parents’ separation. Older children should also be given a say in what type of custody schedule they would prefer.
There is no one correct way to split child custody, but it is ideal for both parents to see their children often and to be involved in their lives. A family law attorney could help you explore different custody options and negotiate a flexible plan that is suitable for you and your children.