Co-Parenting & Creating Memories for the Kids over the Summer when Divorced
Making Summer Visitation Schedules After Divorce
Summer after a divorce can be a time of change for families. With it comes the challenges of keeping kids happy and active. For divorced parents, summer visitation schedule planning can be even more challenging. Even the smallest plan may require more thought and consideration, and likely will have an impact on you and your ex. Before you start planning summertime memories, think about who this impacts most, and who comes first: your children.
When parents disagree about arrangements for kids during the summer, it can turn what should be a fun time into bad memories. Even when things are going well, your children will worry. This is undue stress on the children. Prevent it with proper communication and planning. Focus on minimizing stress for your children at all times.
Summer Visitation Schedule Tips
While a summer visitation schedule usually differs from the rest of the year, it’s important that the lives of your children remain as consistent as possible. Some changes will be more difficult for the family, especially if parents live far apart. Parenting time may be shifted to grant parents who do not have equally shared time during the school year more time during the summer, and arrangements may be made to accommodate vacations. Understanding how your children normally spend their summertime is essential. Try to reduce unnecessary changes to their schedules and routines before making adjustments.
Think about and make a list of the summer activities your kids have done in the past. Check in with your kids to see if they have any new interests they would like to pursue, or if there are activities they no longer wish to participate in. Respect your children’s’ interests and allow older children and teens to have input in the summer planning. Then, learn how your children want to spend their time with each parent. Having this information will help to schedule the children’s summer in a way that has a positive impact instead of making them feel like they are missing out. Settle on everything then update your co-parenting plan or contract with the new information.
Making Positive Memories
Remember, the quality of time is more important than the quantity of time. Consider what time frame will best allow your children to have a positive, stress-free visit. Parents that plan and work with each other and their children to have a positive summer vacation are more successful at helping them have a happy and healthy childhood. Summer is a great time to grow your children’s experiences and memories with both parents.
As a parent, it can be hard to keep your feelings away from your children when you are disappointed or frustrated. If you are bothered by your former partner, don’t share this with your children. Instead, find a trusted friend or person to talk to. Encourage your children to have fun with the other parent to avoid having your children feeling guilty. Children may be reluctant to spend time with the other parent if they think it’s going to leave a parent feeling bad. Remind your children you are happy they can experience fun summer activities regardless of who they are with.
If you feel your children could benefit from having a parenting plan in place, or the current plan requires a review, please contact Fairway Divorce Solutions to arrange for a consultation.