We are a mobile society. More and more often, parents are on the move for a variety of reasons – career advancement, pursuit of education, to care for a sick parent, to access help from extended family. However, in divorce cases, relocating can be a challenging when it means leaving your children behind with the other parent.
Long-distance parenting plans should include more than just a schedule of visits for the remote parent. Creative plans can incorporate ways to use technology to maintain contact and closeness with the relocating parent. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Provide children with cell phones or tablets that can connect to wifi (you can install restrictions so children may not access the internet without supervision)
- Download apps that allow face-to-face contact (Skype, FaceTime, Hangouts, JusTalk) and have pre-planned times to connect. Use the time to just talk, or review homework together, or create your own daily tradition.
- Set up a specific time to connect via text with your child and have a pre-planned question for one another. For example: Tell me what you made you happy today. What did you look forward to when you woke up today? What do you think you will dream about tonight?
- Create a parent-child (private) YouTube channel
- Record story books that your child can listen to (or even follow along with at the other home).
- Play video games together remotely.
- If your child’s school uses an online homework portal, check it regularly so you can support your child in any challenging areas, or congratulate your child when she is successful in an area.
The lawyers at Jill Brittle Family Law Group PC are skilled at writing detailed, thoughtful parenting plans, including long-distance plans that incorporate tools to keep a moving parent connected to the children. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn more about parenting plan development.