If you have children and are going through a separation period or divorce, you will need to put together a parenting plan. That plan will include information such as when to pick up or drop off your children. It may also have specific information about what you can or cannot do while raising them or other topics.
To create a parenting plan, there are several things you can do to create one that lasts and that both you and the other parent can respect. Here are some helpful tips.
5 tips for creating a parenting plan
There are five tips that will help you make a parenting plan that works for you, your ex and your children. Some tips include:
- Keeping your plan simple but detailed
- Clarifying concerns about custody
- Respecting your children’s needs and wants
- Being reasonable with your expectations
- Setting up an approved method of communication
Here’s more about each of these tips.
Keep it simple
To start with, keep your plan simple. Making a schedule that is too complex could make it hard to follow. At the same time, be sure to add details about holidays and special events, so you don’t have unnecessary conflicts.
The next thing to do is to clarify any concerns you have about custody. Letting your spouse and attorney know your concerns is a good way to get those concerns out in the open and to have an honest conversation about how to handle them.
Respect your children’s needs
Next, respect your children’s needs. Young children and infants may need more time with their mothers for nursing, or you may find that a teen child wants to live separately from their younger siblings. Listen to their input, then decide on a plan that fits both their wants and needs when possible.
Being reasonable sets the tone for your future relationship with the other parent. Be honest, respectful and reasonable about trying to mesh what you want with what they do.
Set up solid lines of communication
Finally, set up solid lines of communication and discuss when each person can call or communicate. That way, there are no issues with anyone calling after bedtime or at another inappropriate time.
These five tips can help you set up a better parenting plan. Take your time, and you can create one that is good for everyone involved.