If you are planning to divorce and you have children, you know that you will be experiencing some profound life changes. For one thing, you likely will be sharing custody with your child's other parent. As such, you will be contending with scheduling and other time management issues. But while your parenting agreement covers how the child's time will be divided, it does not contain instructions on how to actually handle the adjustment to your changing circumstances.
One concern you may have is how to help the child maintain his or her accustomed lifestyle. To this end, you may try to take over responsibilities that were previously handled by your ex-spouse. The fact is, it's not possible to fully step into the other parent's shoes. For example, if your ex shared a hobby or other activity with your child, it is probably not prudent to take over his or her role. This is especially true if you do not have the time or an interest in the activities.
Trying to exceed your capabilities, however well intended, could easily lead to disappointment and frustration for both you and your child. But this does not mean your child should go without those things to which he or she has grown accustomed. When approving a parenting plan, the judge takes a child's accustomed lifestyle into account. This is because it is understood how stressful divorce can be for children.
This is why it can be so important to have an experienced family law attorney help you craft a parenting agreement geared toward keeping as much continuity in your child's life as possible. Attorney Dorie A. Rogers is a certified family law specialist whose firm takes a comprehensive approach when helping parents. You can learn about the full range of services she and her fellow attorneys can provide by reading the pages on this website.