Parenting is one of the most difficult jobs, and it is often made even more challenging after a divorce or separation. A comprehensive parenting plan serves as an important foundation for raising children in two homes.
When drafting a parenting plan, it is important to consider a variety of topics to cover everything from day-to-day care practices to uncommon circumstances to ensure each parent has a firm reference point for success.
Ultimately, a parenting plan should keep the best interests of the children at the center. This document functions as a blueprint for several co-parenting issues, including:
- Parent-time schedules, including holidays and vacation times
- Extracurricular activities
- How to handle scheduling changes
- Who will handle certain expenses
- How children can communicate with the other parent while away
- Where and how exchanges take place
- How to introduce new partners to the children
Parents may also opt to include additional details about how they will communicate with one another, or how children should communicate with any extended family or friends in their lives.
Co-parenting after divorce
The more detailed a parenting plan, the easier it will be to navigate the situations that arise as children grow and their lives take various shapes. A well-written parenting plan is especially important for parents who may not see eye to eye on many issues, as it provides a way to avoid unnecessary disagreements down the road.
No matter how unnecessary a plan detail seems at first, it could prevent misunderstandings that may cause conflict between households, resulting in stress for the children. It is wise to map out personal and legal factors unique to each family situation with future decisions and circumstances in mind.