You might have never expected that you’d be filing for a divorce after 10 or more years of marriage. In a perfect world, such things would never happen because married couples would always be able to peacefully resolve their disagreements. In reality, many marriages crumble under the stress of everyday family life. If you determined that it’s best to go separate ways, a primary goal is undoubtedly to achieve a fair settlement.
If you have children, child custody issues are likely a top priority. You love your kids and want what’s best for them. Legal problems can arise, however, if you and your ex disagree about how to interpret what’s best, either for a specific child or all of your children together. With summer time approaching, there are several things to keep in mind regarding your co-parenting agreement.
Remember to keep children’s best interests in mind
Divorce is an adult issue that affects children’s lives. It’s up to you and your co-parent to discuss relevant topics and agree on child custody terms. It’s okay to get your children’s input on certain issues. In fact, doing so might influence your decisions regarding important matters, such as where the kids spend their summer vacation or whether they’ll attend summer camp and, if so, which parent will drop them off and pick them up.
The more detailed of a plan you create, the less room there might be for confusion or disputes.
Discuss your summer plans with your ex
You might have vacation plans of your own this summer. As you learn to navigate a peaceful co-parenting relationship, keep in mind that it’s always best for you and your ex to keep each other informed about travel plans or other special events that might take place during the summer.
You might want to write out plans of agreement for the entire summer ahead of time. On the other hand, you could simply agree to give advanced notice within a specific amount of time if you want to travel and take the kids with you.
Be respectful of each other as parents
You might hope to keep interaction with your ex to a minimum after you finalize your divorce. Such feelings aren’t uncommon. However, if your goal is to help your children cope in as low-stress a manner as possible, it’s helpful if you and your co-parent avoid speaking negatively about each other.
It’s also helpful if you both agree to allow your children to talk about their other parent in your presence or to call him or her if a child is missing the parent who does not have custody at the time. Child custody issues do not have to spark contention or lengthy legal battles, especially if you and your ex are both willing to compromise and cooperate for the sake of your kids.
If a legal problem does arise, you don’t have to try to handle it on your own. Tapping into local resources for support may help you resolve a post-divorce legal issue in a swift and non-confrontational manner.