Child custody matters are sometimes hard to deal with. There is one area that might present unique challenges – coming up with the parenting time schedule. When you and your ex are trying to do this, you may find that you need to sit down with a calendar to ensure that both parents have as much time as possible with the children.
One of the first things that you need to do is to determine the general schedule that you will use when there aren’t any special events or holidays going on. You should look at the child’s school schedule to determine what type of split is necessary. You may also need to look at your work schedule and your ex’s. Remember, the goal here is to have the child spend time with both parents. Usually, this is going to be fairly equal amounts of time. If the child is in school, that time might not be counted toward the time with one parent.
You also need to think about the holidays. Will you get the children every Christmas Eve while your ex gets them on Christmas, or will you alternate years? Be sure to include other holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Easter and maybe even Mardi Gras. The child’s birthday also needs to be included.
You should also make plans for vacations. You might not be able to schedule these now, but most child custody orders have an inclusion that notes a specific amount of time for a vacation per parent. It may even state that vacation plans outweigh the regular schedule. This means that if you plan a vacation that overlaps with your ex’s days, your vacation takes priority.
The more detailed you have the parenting time schedule, the better you might feel about it. Ultimately, you need to encourage your children to build relationships with both parents.