Co-parenting in a post-divorce family can be challenging. After all, not only must you share parental duties with your ex-spouse, but you also must make sure the kids are growing into successful and well-adjusted adults.
When deciding child custody, Arkansas family law judges consider what is best for the children. If you share custody of your kids with your ex-spouse, you may want to apply that same standard. That is, when handing off the young ones in your family to your former partner, you want to consider their overall well-being. Here are three ways to ensure a smooth custody handoff.
- Choose the right location
When you are drafting your custody agreement or parenting plan, you likely have an opportunity to decide where to meet your former spouse to exchange the kids. By choosing a location that is safe and convenient, you minimize the chances of arguing about the handoff site later.
- Provide reassurance
Your children are likely to look to you for emotional guidance during the handoff. Remember, leaving one parent for even a short time may be tough for your kids. As such, try to reassure your children. You may also want to give your young ones a transitional object, such as a blanket from your house or a photograph of you, to help minimize emotional anguish. Fortunately, over time, the handoff is likely to become routine for both you and the kids.
- Be on time
If you make your former spouse wait for your arrival, he or she may not be in a great mood during the handoff. Accordingly, try to be respectful of your ex-spouse’s time by arriving a few minutes early for your meeting. Also, consider confirming the exchange the night before to be sure everyone is on the same page.
When splitting custody of children with a former spouse, you have a variety of challenges you must overcome. The custody handoff, though, does not need to create problems. With a bit of effort and the right attitude, you can likely boost your odds of having a smooth handoff.