Chvatal CK King | Family Law Attorneys
Chvatal CK King | Family Law Attorneys
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Our attorneys have devoted their careers to achieving excellence in the area of family law.

Staying in touch with your children during your co-parent’s time

On Behalf of | Jun 10, 2024 | Child Custody

Parents who have to split up time with their children have to make major adjustments to their parenting style and daily lives. Many adults struggle with depression when they can’t see their children or anxiety over what they may experience while they are with their other parent.

However, people eventually adjust to going entire days without seeing their children in a co-parenting arrangement. The longer the children stay with one parent or the other, the more difficult it can be to spend that time separated from them. In some cases, parents in Washington may need to specifically address separation from the children by adding communication rules to their parenting plans.

What communication is appropriate?

Depending on the age of the children, the relationship they have with both parents and how long they go in between seeing either parent, there are a host of communication tools that could be useful. For younger children, calling a co-parent and having them put the children on the phone could be reasonable. Virtual visitation involving video calls or video messaging apps might also be an option.

For older children, communicating with them directly on their own devices can work. Parents might even be able to add them to networks for cooperative video game play so that they can bond while the children are with the other parent.

Having clear rules about communication is important

While it is reasonable for one parent to want to talk to the children while they are with the other, their co-parent may view that as invasive or disruptive. Therefore, it is often necessary to establish certain expectations and boundaries about co-parent communication.

Limiting how long calls and video chats last, limiting the number of phone calls or conversations per parenting session and having times of day when calls are appropriate are all reasonable rules that parents can add to their parenting plans. The sooner adults address issues that could cause conflict, like ensuring their right to communicate with the children, the less likely they are to have disruptive disputes in the future.

Adding thoughtful terms to a parenting plan can make sharing parental rights and responsibilities less stressful for everyone in a family. As such, communication rules are an important addition to most modern parenting plans.