In the months or years after a divorce, you or your ex may wish or need to move a significant distance away from the other—perhaps a few hours away by car, or even across the country. While this choice may be the best one for you, your family, and your children, it still presents several tough challenges when it comes to staying connected to your child and establishing a healthy and fair child visitation schedule.
Here are the top four challenges associated with long-distance child visitation:
- Coordinating transportation. When you live more than a hundred miles from your kids, child visitation becomes more than simply meeting halfway and dropping the kids off every weekend—you may need to drive a considerable distance, arrange for transportation, or even regularly buy plane tickets. Visitation may include you flying to them or finding someone to travel with your kids so that they arrive safely.
- Seeing your kids regularly. Getting the kids every other weekend simply won’t happen if you move several states away. This means that you may need fewer and longer visits with your children—or that you will only see them during longer school vacations and holidays.
- Making your house a home. It is vital that you make your house feel welcoming for your kids, even if they are only there a few times a year. Do they have their own room or at least their own space? Do they have their own possessions there? What small steps can you take to make them feel comfortable and at ease?
- Avoiding the vacation feeling. When your children can only visit you occasionally, it can be hard to avoid the feeling that your house is a vacation destination and that you are a so-called “Disneyland Dad” (or mom). Prevent this problem by establishing a set schedule and a set list of rules when the kids are under your roof.
Although sharing child custody is certainly more of a challenge the further away you are, you can still have great visits and meaningful relationships with your children—just take time to anticipate common issues and to make your children feel loved, secure, and welcomed.
Do you need the assistance of a Seattle child custody attorney? Call the Law Offices of Molly B. Kenny today: 425-460-0550.