Coming to an agreement regarding child custody may be one of the most difficult things divorcing parents go through. Sometimes emotions get in the way of determining what is best for the child.
Although there are exceptions, in general, studies show that joint custody is better for the child than sole custody is. For parents who decide to share custody, there are ways to make it work effectively for everyone.
According to Science Daily, one of the biggest observations is that children who live with both parents have less stress than those who live full time with one parent. Some potential explanations for this are that the child loses resources, such as money, friends and relatives, when living with only one parent, and there may be more stress when it comes time to see the non-custodial parent.
Having an equal and active relationship with both parents is much better for a child’s well-being, and this is true regardless if there is conflict between the parents or between the child and one or both parents.
Strategies to make joint custody work
Moving from one household family to two is difficult for everyone involved. However, Parents.com outline some tips to make joint custody workable. To start with, both parents must realize that the living situation is beneficial for the child, and they should put aside their differences and agree not to talk bad about the other one while in the presence of the child.
There is not a one-size-fits-all approach for figuring out a custody arrangement. Some considerations are the child’s age and activities, the work and social schedules of each parent and the distance between homes.
Communication is key for a successful arrangement. If the parents are unable to speak directly to one another, emailing, texting or syncing calendars may be better. It is also a good idea to review the arrangement regularly and make changes as needed.