Before 2023 comes to an end, many Ohio parents will decide to start afresh in life without their spouses. Such decisions automatically cause disruption in children’s lives. However, it doesn’t have to ruin them. Divorce happens all the time, and the key to keeping stress to a minimum when kids are involved is to craft a solid parenting plan.
When you divorce your spouse, your marital relationship legally ends. However, you’ll always share a connection together because of your children. The first step to crafting a solid parenting plan is to compile a list of all legal issues that are relevant, such as legal custody and physical custody, as well as child support.
Make your parenting plan as detailed as possible when you divorce
Perhaps you’ll share custody with your ex following your divorce. Then again, maybe you’ll be the custodial parent and your ex will have visitation privileges. In either case, determining who has custody is merely the beginning of a parenting plan. You can incorporate details to simplify the terms of agreement and help parents avoid confusion and disputes.
For example, if one of you is going to be responsible for transporting kids to extra-curricular activities, include it as part of your parenting agreement, in writing. Perhaps you’ve agreed to share the cost of birthday and holiday gifts. Put it in writing. The more you put in writing, the less room there is for disagreement or legal problems.
Prohibiting contact with certain people
If there’s a particular person you do not allow your children to spend time with, make sure you include this in your parenting plan when you divorce. If you omit it, the rules become vague. Your ex might allow the person in question to visit when the kids are there. Things could get messy, especially if you can’t point out specific text in your parenting plan that prohibits the person from being with your children.
Rules for communication between parents and children
A parent must never deny children access to their other parent following a divorce. At the same time, you and your ex no doubt understand that each of you will be living separate lives and will want to respect each other’s privacy. You can strengthen your parenting plan by incorporating terms of agreement regarding how you and your ex will communicate about the kids, as well as how the children will correspond with one parent while they are with the other.
If, for instance, you and your ex argue every time you see each other in person, you might agree to restrict communication to text messaging or email. Your children must be able to get in touch with you when they are with your ex. If you believe your ex is trying to prevent that, you can address the matter in court. A solid parenting plan can help children move on in life amid the changes that a divorce typically brings.