Arguably, the most important thing in establishing a successful co-parenting relationship is how to share parenting time. Calculating parenting time should take into account the idea of “quality time.” Rather than thinking in terms of simply sharing time equally, you can make plans around how meaningful that time will be. This will depend on the work and/or travel schedules of both spouses. However, it is important to share your time around the needs of your child. Some children are adaptable by nature, taking to frequent changes between households. Others require greater stability.
Ultimately, the goal of parenting time is to minimize the losses your children are undoubtedly feeling in reaction to the way divorce has changed their relationships. While parenting time ought to involve one-on-one time with each parent, it should also allow your children to maintain any other former relationships as well, with both extended family and close friends. If at all possible, parents should live within close enough proximity to keep contact frequent for everyone. The more positive both parents make parenting time – including the way they talk about their child’s time with the other parent – the safer and more stable the children will feel. Children recognize that they are a combination of both their parents. Inflicting damage on their view of one parent inflicts damage on themselves.