A parenting plan is a crucial part of any child custody agreement. Planning is essential in many areas of life, and children are one of the most important aspects of any parent’s life.
You do not need to spell out every second of your child’s future in the plan. Yet you do need to include considerable detail. The very act of writing it down and discussing it will help highlight potential issues that might not occur when merely thinking or talking about it. It is the cross between the timetables of three lives — that of you, your co-parent and your child and you need to ensure the three schedules function together.
Remember, not all weeks are standard
Most weeks of the year, your child will be at school. That is perhaps the easiest part to program as both parents do not have to worry about the kids for most of the day.
Yet, public and school holidays are easy to overlook unless you write them down. Who will look after the kids if you are both at work?
You also need to account for special occasions such as birthdays or Christmas. You probably both want to see your child these days, and they probably want to see both of you. Yet it is not always possible, so sometimes you need to think ahead and alternate from one year to the other.
Any parent knows having a child involves a lot of last-minute plan changes. What if the child gets chickenpox and cannot go to school? What if they want to stay over with their friends for the weekend instead of spending it with you.
Flexibility is the name of the game here. As parents, you need to accommodate your child’s many needs while still respecting your own. If you and your co-parent can help each other out rather than fight about everything, it will make for a more manageable situation. Handling custody negotiations in a cooperative rather than combative form is an excellent start.