One of the biggest challenges for divorcing parents is ensuring that both parents get equal time with their children to preserve those relationships. It is important to create a parenting plan that encourages those relationships.
There are a few communication elements to incorporate into your parenting plan to facilitate the relationship between your children and both parents.
Cell phone communication
Children are growing up in a digital age with elementary-age children carrying smartphones. If you have children with smartphones of their own, address the phone use for parental communication in the parenting plan. Specify when non-custodial parents can contact the children through phone calls and texting. The key is to encourage open communication without interfering with quality time with the other parent.
Video call scheduling
Especially for younger children, video calls are beneficial when away from one parent. Visual contact helps young children feel connected. Schedule video calls for the children with each parent to maintain that connection.
Special contact provisions
Include provisions that address any special contact, including child-requested phone calls, birthday and holiday communications and more frequent calls during prolonged visitation periods. As children get older, special contact provisions can also allow older children to visit the other parent at will once they have their driver’s license and a car.
The more details you address in your parenting plan, even when it comes to contact between parents and children, the easier co-parenting becomes. Eliminate the uncertainties and any potential avenue for conflict by addressing these considerations while you draft your parenting plan.