Let’s face it, co-parenting is not always easy, and sometimes it can be quite stressful. However, that does not mean because you are a divorced parent that you should be singing the summer time blues! In fact, summer can be a great time for both you and your children. First, you will get some extra summer parenting time, and your child will hopefully have some wonderful experiences with their other parent. Sure, there are bound to be some minor hiccups along the way, but if both parents are on the same page and follow a few simple tips, this summer can be nearly stress-free!
- Plan ahead. Do not wait until your child is out of school to plan for the summer. It is important to drag out and review your parenting agreement well in advance of summer break Depending on how many years ago your plan was written, certain things may no longer work as written. For example, if your child is now old enough to attend a three-week summer camp, your parenting agreement may not account for this type of activity. You do not want to wait until the last minute to discover this kind of an issue!
- Keep the focus on the children. The best tip is always to put your child’s needs first when considering any problem. Sometimes, even the best of parents can find themselves in an argument with their ex over combatting ideas. However, sometimes in these situations, if a parent considers what the child would want, the problem may just resolve itself. Remember, childhood is fleeting, and a parent’s goal should always be for a child to have the best summer he or she can have with both parents.
- Be flexible. Flexibility is the key to any successful co-parenting relationship. The more you and your ex can work things out between the two of you, the better for you, your wallet, and of course, your children.
- View summer as a time to recharge. If you are feeling a bit sad that you will miss out on several weeks of time with your children, it is important to take a look at things from another perspective. First, be happy that they will have some quality time with the other parent and that you will enjoy some quality time solo. Use this time to do something fun or simply to recharge your batteries.
- Find creative (and respectful) ways to stay connected to your child while he or she is with your ex. Depending on the age of your children, find a way to connect with them while they are spending time away. Maybe if they are on a 2-week vacation with your ex, you can send them letters or postcards in the mail. If your children are older, regular texts may be nice in addition to your regular phone calls.
- Stay positive. If you are sad or anxious at the thought of your child spending several weeks with your ex, your child will pick up on your vibe. While it is okay to tell your child that you will miss them, it is important to follow up with something to the effect that “the fact that the time will go so fast.” It is important to stay positive and prepare your child for the separation.
If you encounter a problem with your summer parenting schedule, the experienced Oklahoma Family Law Attorneys at Handley Law Center can help. A skilled Oklahoma Family Law Attorney will not only address your concerns but also explain your legal options. At The Handley Law Center, we understand that even though your divorce is completed, problems with parenting agreements can still arise. To see what our team of family law attorneys will recommend for you, contact The Handley Law Center at (405) 295-1924. No matter if you need someone to mediate a dispute or to zealously defend your rights in court—our attorneys are ready to step in!