Post-Divorce Schedules

Divorce mediation can make children’s schedules easier. You can communicate directly with your ex-to-be and work out what is best for you and especially your children. Kids are different. There will nearly always be an unsettled period when the child first arrives at your place from the other parent. Depending on the child and his or her age, this period of being “unsettled” can last from an hour or two to several days. that means your child may not seem “normal” to you after she or he comes to you. That doesn’t mean your child had a bad time at your ex. If your child is sleeping a lot at your house, it may mean that she or he is not getting sleep at the other house, or could simply mean that your child is very comfortable at your house, especially if you have remained in the marital home. if your child is unsettled near the end of his or her stay in your house, it doesn’t necessarily mean that she hates it at your house or he dreads going to your ex’s. It could be that your child simply dreads transitions regardless of whose house the child is in or going to.

This unsettled period means that some kids do better with a longer time in each household. If their “unsettled” time is a day or more, a three day schedule could mean only a day or two of “normal” child at your place, in the middle or his or her stay. Such a child may do better with a longer stay in each house, or may need some counseling to talk about how to ease the transitions.

The same is true of vacations. Some kids do well away from a parent for a week, while for some children of any age that can be a [problem. that’s why one rule about kids is never enough, and scheduling decisions are best left to parents in consultation with professionals. The worst schedule is one that may be good for each parent but “hell” for the child. Minnesota laws and judges would likely have a problem with such a schedule.