Make co-parenting easier this summer

Co-parenting can be a challenge, but summer can offer a unique opportunity to make memories with your children and create a positive co-parenting environment. It’s up to you and your co-parent to figure out what works for everyone.

As you plan for summer, consult the parenting plan to determine what special terms there are in place – perhaps within the text of a parenting plan – for this time of year. Some plans allow planned vacations to trump the normal schedule. Be sure you discuss any scheduled activity with your co-parent. This can include vacations, day trips or just regular visits. The more details you can agree on in advance, the less chance there will be for misunderstandings or disagreements later.

Communicate openly

Proper communication should be a practice throughout the year, but it’s especially important during the summer when schedules can be more hectic. Make sure both parents have a clear understanding of what’s expected and are on the same page.

Be willing to adjust

Summer schedules don’t always go as planned. Be willing to accommodate changes in the other parent’s schedule, as long as they are reasonable and communicated in a timely manner. Always remember the focus should be on the children’s well-being and happiness. Make decisions based on what’s best for them, not what’s most convenient for you.

Practice mutual respect

Respect the agreed upon schedule and avoid last-minute changes unless absolutely necessary. Picking up and dropping off the children on time will also show respect for the other parent’s time. This also provides stability for the kids, which can greatly benefit them.

Encourage shared experiences

Allow and encourage your kids to share their summer experiences with the other parent. This can help maintain a sense of continuity and stability for your children. If you’re going on vacation, remember to set up a plan for communication between your co-parent and your children. You can use phone calls, video chats and similar methods to do this.

Summer should be a fun and relaxing time for your children. Avoid turning it into a competition about who can provide the best or most extravagant summer experience. Instead, focus on creating meaningful and memorable moments with your children.

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