Child Custody Article By Shulman Law Firm
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Tips for Transitioning to Two Households

Every family’s experience of divorce is different. Among those differences may be the number of the children between the parents as well as their age and gender. Due to these differences, talking about divorce and separation is like comparing snowflakes. Each is unique.

With that, there are some things that can make a child’s transition to two households easier.

Keeping Conflict Under Control

One tip for transitioning into two households is that, wherever possible, keep conflict under control. Of course, there will be conflict. The issue is how it is managed. In truth, it isn’t bad for kids to see some parental discord. What has proven to not be in their interest is when that friction goes on unresolved or where it escalates to harsh behavior by one or both parents.

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If the name calling or shouting is getting out in front of the kids, or worse, it is time to consider professional support. That support can come in the way of counseling, mediation or negotiation through a supportive legal team.

Age Implications

Next, recognize that the age of the child or children should be factored into your residential arrangement. Infants and preschoolers are better served with frequent and regular contact between parents. Children this young struggle because they often miss whoever they are not with. They may hold it together for a day or two, but come the third day, missing the other parent may contribute to poor eating or sleeping, irritability and challenging behavior.

As children age, they can tolerate greater time between seeing the other parent. Of course, things like video calls can help, but it doesn’t replace direct contact.

For the older child, preteen and teen, it can be very helpful to consider their preferences when setting out a parenting plan. The older child may want to consider their choice of school and friends. Given they are entering an age where socialization with peers is a growing priority, taking this into account can ease their transition.

As for comparing only child versus multi-child scenarios, while some siblings are remarkably supportive of each other, expecting they will be there for each other may be a wishful fantasy. Therefore, it remains important to check with all kids as to their experience of the transition. The key in checking is to manage one’s own sense of parental guilt if feeling poorly about your child’s circumstance. Often more important than intervening on a concern is simply listening so that your child feels heard.

Click here more tips on how to best ease the transition to two households for children of different ages.

Keep Everyone Informed

Lastly, when transitioning into two households be sure to share information as best as you can. This includes finding joint solutions wherever possible for issues that may be arising.

Taken together, these tips can go a long way to your child’s successful transition.

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