The divorce process comes with many steps and sometimes obstacles. When divorcing a narcissist the best thing is No Contact but when children are involved Low Contact is the only option. If your spouse and you are somewhat communicating throughout the divorce process uncontested this can be easier than if there is fighting all the way. This is how you start to write a parenting plan.
First, you want to think about the schedules of the parents and the children. Ages of the children can also be a factor as well as school schedules. Most states prefer a joint custody parenting plan but if this does not work you will have to plead your case in court if you can not agree with the co-parent. If you have certain traditions you will want to put those into the parenting plan so they can continue.
You should plan for events such as birthdays and holidays. Sometimes it is safe to give one parent even years and the co-parent odd years for holidays to keep it straight through the year. If you’re the mother you may want Mother’s Day every year just like the father may want to have Father’s Day every year. With Christmas, you can compromise with Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. When I first started the divorce process with my ex I gave every other holiday as well as every other weekend but because he moved out of state this form was null and void because that parenting time would not be possible so I fought for sole custody.
Another thing to consider in the parenting plan is expenses. Who will be responsible for paying what? Is child support going to be involved? Either way, you will want to have a register of child-related expenses like medical costs that will help you and the co-parent stay on top of parenting costs that will be shared. Remember that this parenting plan will be for your children until they are 18 years old or it is taken back up in court.
If you need help with developing a parenting plan you can set an appointment with Misty Dawn and she will help you walk through it with confidence that you have covered everything that may come up.