Creating and Understanding Parenting Plans
It is important for a family to design a parenting plan to insure a focused family environment. This holds true for any family, but it is a necessity for a family that is going through a divorce. A well designed parenting plan lessens disagreements, decreases conflict, and helps the entire family understand what is going to take place.
This greatly decreases conflict between the two ex-spouses, and increases the chances that the child/children will grow up in a stable environment. This also encourages the parents to work together to discuss situation rather than argue about them. Most divorced parents come to realize that with a little consistency comes a future of predictability. This will lower disputes between family members.
When children are growing up it is important that they spend time with both parents. With a well designed parenting plan this is possible. Not only will a well designed parenting plan help the parents schedule time with the children, but it will also give the parents an opportunity to participate in the children's education, finances, and any health care they may need.
Some of the basics in creating a good parenting plan are as follows:
Negotiated Parenting Arrangements
The parents of children who are going through a divorce must negotiate with each other in order to create a sound environment for the children. Parents must understand the needs of the children, and must take into consideration that they are doing this for the best interests of the children. The children are going through an enormous amount of change in a divorce situation, so is important that the parents work together and not against each other when dealing with the children and their future. It is also important to try to keep court involvement at a minimum when dealing with certain parenting issues. Remember that the courts don't know your children. When the parents move through the legal process, the majority of the full court custody arrangements are very low. Most of the time the parents are left with the responsibility of making arrangements for full custody.
Also, if a plan is well designed, it will insure that the conflicts between divorced spouses will be kept at a minimum. This only makes sense. When the parents can cooperate with each other, the conflicts will be almost non-existent.
Parenting Custody and Arrangements
So "Who gets the children"? Parents are obligated to provide for the children educationally, medically, safety, etc. The same holds true in a divorce situation. If the custody is joint, then the parents must make arrangements for the new living styles for the children. Both parents are obligated to provide the same needs the children would have in an in tact family environment.
The most common custody in the courts is either sole or shared custody. In a soul custody arrangement, only one parents cares for the child/children, while the other parent is granted visitation. In a shared custody, both parents are able to spent significant amounts of time with the child/children, and decisions are made together. The courts primarily award sole custody to the mother, and the father is then granted visitation by the courts.
Return to the Children Page