Civility between parents sharing custody helps children
Sometimes when a couple goes through an especially contentious divorce, there can be strong resentments and anger that extends well past the point of signing the final decree. And if the couple has children, the former spouses will likely have to interact on a regular basis. Ex-spouses typically have to face each other when they pass the children to one another in accordance with their child custody agreement. And while this transaction can be stressful, it is very important that it be completed with as much civility as possible. This will benefit the child in ways you may not realize.
So what is the best way for you to deal with sending your child to spend time with his or her other parent? Well, first off, it is a good idea to give the child the impression that you are happy with the arrangement. A doctor of psychology says a child could feel guilty if he or she believes one parent is upset about the time spent with the other parent.
And even if it is difficult, you want to avoid confrontations with your spouse when he or she comes to pick up the child. According to a Ph.D. and author, research indicates a father may forgo visiting his child because he dreads the possibility of conflict during the pickup. And this behavior can be damaging to a child who is best served by having a relationship with both parents.
But by the same token, your ex-spouse should be willing to make the necessary sacrifices for the benefit of the children and adhere to the terms of the custody agreement. This means that the pickups and drop-offs must be conducted properly. And if he or she consistently violates the agreement, you may want to discuss the matter with a family law attorney. Depending on the degree to which the agreement is being violated, you may wish to petition the court to have the terms enforced or modified to correct the situation.