Either the kids are going or coming for the summer and shifting households can be a stressful and exciting time for everyone. If the kids are leaving, some custodial parents may suffer separation anxiety, while others may take advantage of a kid-free zone! If the kids are going to be with their noncustodial parent, then all parents should have an open discussion about transitioning the children in the most seamless fashion.
According to New York Family Law Attorney, Joleena Pickett Louis, her clients have conflicts about the following:
1. Parent who doesn’t have children say the other parents won’t let them call enough/parent who has children says other parent calls too much
2. Nutrition/ health issues
3. Last minute activities. Family events/trips/parties that the parent who does not have the children wants them to attend and the other parent says it’s their time.
Custodial parents, please remember that you can’t control what happens in the other household. Make suggestions, be kind, request cooperation, do not demand it. Such behavior is not good for anyone and the other household may very well push off your antics as being high-conflict and plain annoying. Allowing the other household to parent the way they see fit is most conducive to well-rounded kids. As long as your kids are safe you have to just let some things go.
We want to make sure all your bases are covered, so here is a quick list of things to go over with your child’s other household:
1. Does the children have any new allergies
2. What are their food preferences
3. What are their clothing/shoe current sizes
4. Are the girls menstruating, if so, what type of feminine products do they use
5. Does the other parent want to receive updates via text or email
6. What type of hair maintenance products do they use
7. What type of summer camp would the child find most enlightening
8. What is the child’s daily routine (bedtime, tech time, play time, bath time)