Child Custody And Daily Communication: Benefits And How To Determine A Communication Schedule
If you and your partner have recently split, you may be considering how you can keep your child in contact with their non-custodial parent on a regular basis. While regular visitation may not always be possible, other forms of communication, such as phone calls and emails, can be beneficial for your child.
Why Daily Communication Between Non-Custodial Parents and Children is Important
It's important for children to have regular contact with both parents whenever possible. With a daily communication schedule, your child and the non-custodial parent can continue to grow their relationship and bond.
Assuming the other parent isn't abusive, daily communication can be extremely beneficial for your child, especially if the split from your partner is still new. Daily communication will allow your child's other parent to continue to play an active role in their life, and open communication between your child and their other parent can help your child to come to terms with the split and accept their new normal.
How Can You Determine a Reasonable Daily Communication Schedule?
When working with your ex-partner to create a reasonable daily communication schedule, there's a number of things you'll both need to consider.
First, it's important to take your child's age into account. Toddlers and preschoolers can have difficulty focusing for long periods of time, so short communications of about 5 or 10 minutes every day are best. If your child struggles with even that short amount of time, consider switching from phone calls to video calls to increase your child's interest. Other things you'll need to consider are how often your child sees the non-custodial parent and whether your child has access to their own communication devices, such as a phone or computer. As your child grows older, the need for a communication schedule will dwindle as your child will be able to communicate on their own terms.
What If Your Ex and You Don't Agree on a Communication Schedule?
While not every divorce is amicable, regular communication between your child and their other parent is still important. If you and your ex-partner can't decide on a schedule, however, you may need to go to court.
You may feel as if your ex-partner expects too much daily communication time and it's beginning to cut into your child's schedule. If your ex-partner is emotionally abusive, perhaps you think that daily communication is unhealthy for your child. Whatever your reasons, if you and your ex cannot work out an agreed upon schedule, then court may be the only answer. A judge will take into account the above mentioned considerations, such as age and how often your child sees their other parent. If you feel that daily communication is detrimental, however, you should hire a divorce attorney to help you prove your case to the judge. While the judge may not entirely disallow communication between the child and your ex-partner, he may place restrictions on it and allow you to interfere with communications (hang up the phone) if the conversation steers towards parental alienation or becomes abusive.
If you're in the midst of a divorce, or if you and your ex-partner are struggling to come to an agreement regarding daily communication between your child and their other parent, it's time to consult with a divorce attorney like Craig H. Lane, PC.