You and your spouse decided to end your marriage, but one thing you didn’t think would be so difficult is deciding how to divide your time with your child. You want to make sure that they feel comfortable and confident moving between homes, but you and your soon-to-be-ex haven’t been able to come up with a custody schedule that works for you.
What can you do? Is there an easy way to make a custody schedule that works? Here are three ideas to help you resolve this conflict.
- Write down both of your work schedules
The first thing to do is to write down your work schedules and any other important responsibilities that must happen at a set time each week. Compare your schedules once you do that, so you can see which times make sense for you or the other parent to have custody. For example, if you work Monday through Thursday and they work Monday through Friday, you can initially mark off that it makes sense for you to have custody on Fridays. This eliminates questions about one day of the week and starts you on your way to creating a solid schedule.
- Talk to your kids
Another step you may want to take is to talk to your children. Ask them what their preferences are if they’re old enough to have that conversation. You may find that your younger children want to move back and forth more frequently or that your older teen would prefer not to be with their younger sibling throughout the school week.
- Be prepared to compromise
Sometimes, there isn’t an easy solution to questions about custody. In those cases, be ready to compromise. Talk about alternatives, like daycares or babysitters. Be prepared to work out a solution that benefits your children, so that they can feel comfortable with the changes.
If you can’t come to a resolution despite your best efforts, alternative forms of dispute resolution or litigation may be what it takes to get the right plan in place. Know your legal rights and obligations, so you know what to expect next.