Adding virtual visitation to your parenting plan

Coming to an agreement on a parenting plan may be difficult for two parents in Georgia who both want to spend as much time with their child as possible. Developing a fair schedule may seem even more challenging if one parent has moved to another state, but communication options may help bridge the distance. The State of Georgia points out that the child custody agreement should include acceptable ways for a parent to interact with the child when they are not together.

CustodyZen.com explains that taking advantage of video chats, email, instant messaging and social media in addition to phone calls and texts may be excellent ways for parents and children to stay in touch, although none of these should be a substitute for reasonable visitation. The contact may help a child to experience less trauma from the separation, but the communication should be as consistent and regular as possible to prevent a greater sense of uncertainty.

It is natural for the parent who is talking to the child to want privacy, and in fact, the child should have the advantage of a discussion without the other parent eavesdropping, as well. While the parent who is inviting an ex-spouse into the home virtually should respect this privacy, the other parent should also respect the privacy of the home. Both parents should refrain from attempting to learn about each other by questioning the child during or after the visit.

The parenting plan should include details such as a regular day and time for a virtual visitation, acceptable means of communication and other ground rules for the visit. Both parents may feel more comfortable with the arrangement this way, reducing the potential for conflict that may cause stress for their child.

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