Surviving the Summer Child Custody Transition
Divorced families often face a unique situation during the summertime, especially when the parents live far apart. In such cases, it is not uncommon that one parent may have custody of the children throughout the school year, while the other may have custody over the summer break.
Making the transition from one household to the other for a few months can be awkward for everyone involved, but there are ways in which the “school year parent” can help the children make the summer switch.
- Support the transition. Encourage the children to enjoy their time and refresh their relationship with the other parent. They are not just visiting, but living with the other significant adult in their lives.
- Communicate. Let the other parent know what to expect regarding the important changes in the children’s lives, such as medical issues, new interests, or difficult behavior. Staying in contact throughout the year can help both parents maintain the bond with their children.
- Leave on a positive note. Prepare the children and yourself for the goodbye by spending some extra time together before parting and focus on the positive.
- Make the goodbyes predictable. Creating a ritual that you repeat every year will help the goodbye become less daunting. Some families have a song they sing or a special hug they share before making the transition.
- Stay in touch. While the children are away for the summer, you’ll be able to enjoy a brief respite from the stresses of managing a job, childcare, and other responsibilities, but it doesn’t mean you have to cut off all contact. Make a plan with your former spouse and the children about how to stay in touch and how often.
Regardless of your situation, the child custody attorneys at The Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz can help you reach a fair and comprehensive settlement plan for your divorce in Pennsylvania, including important custody matters. Call us at (610) 645-0100 or contact us online for a consultation about your options.