5 Things That Should Be Included In A Parenting Plan

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmGoing through a divorce is difficult for some and many undergo psychological pressure and stress. One of the main reason for that is the custody battle. As the divorce proceeding takes place, the threat of losing your children’s custody looms large. Every parent wants to spend time with his/her child and wants full custody after divorce. However, California courts will look into what’s best for the child and other factors before making a decision. That is why parents should come up with a great parenting plan so that both of them are satisfied and get substantial opportunity to spend time with their child. Here are five things that is absolutely necessary for a parenting plan.

  1. Fair parenting time

Kids are highly prone to psychological stress and to avoid that, make sure that both of you spend equal amount of time with your kid. You can also do it together if you want.

  1. Give importance to visitation hours

Visitation hours is the time when you will be quality time with your child. So, make the best of it. Have fun with your child and make them feel that they’re not being ignored.

  1. Power to change the plan

Situations change and sometimes it’s not in your hands to control the situation. A great parenting plan is flexible and should be changed if the situation demands so. Remember that the change should happen for the good of the child and not because you or your partner want it changed for your benefit.

  1. Dispute resolutions

Try settling disputes on your own instead of going to the court. A good parenting plan should be made in a way that helps settle disputes that arise due to custody and child care.

  1. The child should be the main focus

The reason why the parenting plan exists is because of the child and if the child is ignored then there’s no point of having a plan at all. Instead of building a parenting plan according to your convenience, make it around your child’s comfort.

Conclusion

Divorce becomes a tough issue when children get involved. Custody battles can be difficult for some and to avoid psychological stress and other problems, they must create a parenting plan that works best for everyone. The plan should especially cater to the needs of the child and both parents should devote the time and energy to look after their child.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Creating Successful Parenting Plans After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

child custody attorneys Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmLife after divorce can be tough for those who have trouble coping up with their new lifestyle. They often have a hard time managing finances and time. Another important thing that they have trouble dealing with is children. A divorce may affect children in a negative way or it might not affect them at all. Sometimes, it’s very hard to understand the situation. Making good and smart parenting plans is one way of handling it. A parenting plan is equivalent to a guidebook for handling children after divorce. You must make changes but how and what changes should you make?

Creating effective plans

The first thing that you must keep in mind when making parenting plans is that the same plan won’t work for everyone. The ideal plan should contain all your children’s needs without compromising too much on your own comfort. Here are some additional steps you can follow to make the plan even better.

  1. Separate feelings from behavior

Feeling hurt, angry and depressed are common emotions after a divorce. However, none of them should be directed towards your children. If you want, take some time out for yourself until you’re mentally prepared to take care of your kids. But that does not mean you should ignore them. In fact, include them in your plan and go for a vacation or do some fun stuff together until your mind clears off.

Research has shown that children of divorced couples have a tendency to act violently due to adverse psychological effects. Never show your negative feelings to your children. Always remember that they are watching you.

  1. Protect your children

The very reason you are creating a parental plan is because you care about your children and don’t want anything bad to happen to them. Both you and your ex. should include plenty of time where your children spends time with both of you. Whatever problems you might have, keep them to yourself and don’t let them tarnish your relationship with your children.

  1. Make plans as a team

Before your divorce, your children were used to both of you doing things as a family. After a divorce, you should try letting your children have the same feeling. It is tough but at least you can make parental plans that includes doing activities as a family.

Conclusion

Parental plans play an important role in divorce because they protect a child from falling into negative environments. Creating successful parental plans involves the participation of both parent as a team.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Ways to Help Your Kids Cope After Your Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmWhen you are going through and also after divorce, here are some ways to be a good parent and limit the adverse impact on your kids due to your divorce:

Should engage in a harmonious co-parenting, which benefits your kids

There are parents who are known to co-parent effectively until the time their kids become 18 years old.  However, there are a lot of events in your children’s lives even after they turn 18 where both you and your ex-spouse need to be involved as parents. Your little ones will be graduating from their colleges one day, get married and become parents themselves. Thus, there will be several such occasions where divorced parents are still expected to continue co-parenting even after their kids become adults. You can get in touch with a reputable parenting coordinator so that an effective parenting plan can be devised to serve the requirements of your children and then, co-parent.

You should not complain about how things are at the home of the other parent. Moreover, do not intervene even if your kids remain awake till late hours at the home of their other parent. Effective co-parenting means to be cool with how your kids are taken care of in their other home and trust that your children are happy and safe while they are at your ex-spouse’s home.

Try to build up a civil relationship with your former spouse

Your kids should not be used as pawns by you to get even with your ex. Moreover, they should be kept out of any type of hurt feelings or problems due to your divorce or marital problems. Every mother and father has a deep influence in the lives of their kids. Children can only become healthy and good human beings when they are positively influenced by both their parents. Moreover, your children should have an equal contract with both you and their other parent even after the divorce. Do not try to alienate your ex where the children are concerned. When you truly love your kids, you need to ensure that they have everything they require though you do not share a good relationship with your former spouse.

You should not express your negative feelings about the other parent in front of the children

Look for an alternative outlet when you want to vent out your grudge and emotions about your ex, your friends, family members are a professional therapist can give you better support than your kids. After all, your kids are definitely not equipped to cope up with your negative emotions.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated!  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How to Create a Parenting Plan that Works

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmWhen a family goes through a divorce or a separation, there are a number of changes that occur. Some are huge changes that affect the entire family on a day-to-day basis. Others seem small amidst the upheaval, but can actually have long term, lasting effects and directly influence other events in the future. That’s why so many co-parents find it difficult to come up with a parenting plan that actually works. They’re in new territory. They aren’t sure what to expect.

Parents attempting to put together a parenting plan that will function for the long-term have many factors to consider, but it is possible to create a parenting plan that works.

Creating a Parenting Plan that Works:

  1. Keep the Children’s Needs the Top Priority
  2. Carefully Consider What You’re Willing to Fight For
  3. Regularly Check Back On the Plan & Revise When Necessary

It’s important that parents are realistic in their expectations of their partner and in their expectations for themselves and make sure the parenting plan works for the entire family while favoring the children’s needs. One of the most common mistakes made by new co-parents putting together an initial parenting plan is to overlook the mundane. Most take great care to fully address the major concerns: physical custody (where the child resides) and legal custody (who is responsible for making important decisions such as healthcare and education and religion, etc.) Yet once the major concerns are taken care of, some simply assume the rest will fall into place.

Since most conflict will occur during or as a result of day-to-day, mundane actions, these seemingly mundane details should actually receive a great amount of attention and care in order for a parenting plan to work. For instance, don’t overlook specifics like drop off and pick up, activity and extracurricular arrangements, holiday planning, etc. In addition to scheduling of time and transportation, new co-parents will also need to include agreements on shared parenting expenses and child support as well as co-parenting communications and how to manage the decision-making process as co-parents (particularly if co-parents share legal custody).

Addressing every little detail may seem over the top to new co-parents, but it significantly decreases the likelihood that there will be disagreements down the road. Minimize the stress of co-parenting with the most effective parenting plan possible. Get in touch with an experienced family law attorney at The Maggio Law Firm today so we can assist you in putting together an effective and positive parenting plan that will work for you and your family.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated!  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Parental Alienation And The Effect On Children In Divorce Cases

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County child custody; The Maggio Law FirmAn extremely unsavory aspect of divorce, as well as a legal separation, revolves around the serious issue of kids being adversely impacted by the anguish and agony their parents usually go through. The possibility of a divorce and prospects of a marital separation can be painful processes, which disturb the kids involved in such situations.

PAS or Parental Alienation Syndrome

This syndrome was introduced by Richard Gardner, a renowned psychiatrist in a paper that he shared in 1985. The syndrome refers to the emotional and physical withdrawal of a kid from their parent although the alienated mother or father offers adequate tenderness and care to the child. It is triggered by parental alienation, which is a chain of behaviors that an alienating parent uses either subconsciously or consciously to spoil the relationships of a child with the other parent. Though such a condition is not specific to only divorce or separation cases, parental alienation and the PAS typically evolve in cases of custody conflicts or disputes.

Instances of parental alienating behavior

  • To convince a child that the target parent has been abusive towards them and has been neglecting them to tarnish the image of the target parent.
  • Using the kid to pass on messages between the two parents rather than direct parent-to-parent communication.
  • Sharing thoughts or convincing the kid to hate and distrust the targeted parent.
  • To blame the targeted parent for the breakup of the marriage
  • Withdraw physical and emotional support of a kid when they demonstrate love and care for the targeted parent

Ways of responding to your child’s alienation

  • When children get entangled in the midst of their parents’ marital dissolution, you should ensure as their parents that they are loved, supported and cared for.
  • You should not tolerate the PAS syndrome at all. In case you are victimized from it, you immediately report the sane to a judge or a counselor.
  • You should not portray a bad image of your spouse in front of the kids. Even if you dislike your former partner, you should make sure your kids enjoy a warm relationship with their other parent.

Though it is likely that you will be going through a tough phase in your life while being separated from your spouse, you should remember that your kids are also going through a similar kind of feeling. You should take all possible steps to ensure that your kids feel comfortable and are free of stress during this trying period.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated!  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

4 Tips for Successful Co-Parenting

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

child custody attorneys in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmFor many couples, a custody battle is a big headache and they try to avoid it as much as possible. For this reason, many settle for joint custody arrangements. However, even joint custody arrangements can become maddening and exhausting, especially for couples who have had a strained relationship.

There are divorces where neither of the spouses wants to be fully responsible for the child. It usually happens when both parents are working and none have the entire day to look after children. For such parents, co-parenting is a great option but sometimes even that can become tough. If you are one such individual, then here are some tips that will help you with your co-parenting.

  1. Collaborate with your ex

The best way for parents to make co-parenting successful is to collaborate with each other and focus on the needs of the child. Having a bitter relationship with your ex can cost you a lot financially and emotionally. According to recent reports, children who witness bad divorces are more likely to be affected by anxiety and depression among other problems. Costs can also be shared equally and the burden of responsibility gets lessened.

  1. Create a plan

Creating a long-term plan always works when you don’t know how to go about co-parenting with your ex. Have a talk with your ex and let him/her know what you intend to do for the child in the next 10 years. Your plan should include basic requirements like education, school or college, nourishment, health and shelter. It should also include family time as it contributes to a child’s growth.

  1. Communicate effectively

Ineffective or low communication is probably the reason why you and your partner are not together anymore. Set aside your differences and talk to your ex about your child’s future. Communication often helps one understand the problems faced by the other person and how it can be solved.

  1. Share things equally

Co-parenting is all about sharing everything equally between two people. It includes responsibilities, costs, time and problems. Equal sharing takes a certain amount of load from each of the parents’ shoulder and allows them to focus on important things related to the child.

Co-parenting is never easy and for some it is challenging. However, effective communication and collaboration can have magical effects. Additionally, you should create a plan and work towards your child’s needs. Sharing everything, which is part of co-parenting, makes the job easier.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated!  Click the following link to download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Top 3 Ways To Keep Your Kids Happy Even After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmMost divorced couples, as well as divorce experts, would agree that kids get highly affected by the conflict between their parents after the latter are divorced. It is interesting to note that kids are not harmed by their parents’ divorce, rather the onus lies on those parents who do not give first priority to their kids during the divorce. As parents, it is your responsibility to do the best for your kids after the divorce comes through so that they do not turn into collateral victims. Are you a worried parent who does not want your divorce to cause a negative impact on the kids or minimize them as possible? Here are some of those things to take care of such an issue.

Try to put yourself in your kids’ shoes

Never be under the illusion that your children are related when they get to know that their father or mother are in love again or are dating a new person or love going out with their friends.  Things simply do not function that way. As a loving parent, your happiness should depend on how satisfied your children are. It should never work in a reverse way. After all kids are narcissistic in nature, which means they are more bothered about their own happiness and requirements. It is not your kid’s lookout how happy you are in your personal life.

Both the parents should try to have a healthy relationship after their divorce

Both the parents have a special and individual influence in the lives of their children. Your children gave got a better chance to grow up as healthy adults when they get the company of both their parents. So, it is extremely crucial for the kids of the divorced parents to get equal time to spend with both their parents. It is quite likely that you are not quite fond of your gourmet spouse now but that does not mean your kids will stop loving their other parent. When you love your kids above everyone else, make sure that all their requirements are fulfilled despite your not so cordial relationship with your ex.

Try to let go of the feeling that you are superior to the other parent

It is possible that your former spouse abused you or cheated on you. However, what is more, crucial is whether they treat your kids well or not. When they love the children despite their shortcomings and your children feel secure and respected with their other parents, you should not be judgmental.

Finally, kids can be victims when it is a question of their parents getting divorced. They do not have any voice in the decisions taken by you and your spouse regarding the marriage breakup. It is imperative that they have some sort of control over how they should live. You can be their best parents by fulfilling their emotional needs even after the divorce is finalized.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How To Make Visitation Easier After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmDivorce can be a chaotic stage in a couple’s life, full of upheaval, changes, and uncertainty. Additionally, when there are children in the marriages, things can be quite tough on them. If you want to make things easier and smoother for them as a parent, both you and your former spouse should collaborate in a manner to ensure that there are no hiccups in the visitation process. Divorce experts will vouch for it that parenting the kids is the most crucial task for you as a parent. So, if you and the other parent can work out things in a harmonious manner, it is possible to avoid negative, lasting and long effects on the kids.

As parents, you should demonstrate a united front so that your children feel relaxed and confident during such a trying time. Check out some of the ideas and thoughts to make sure that your child visits are a positive experience for everybody.

Be quick and punctual

It is important to be there and always be punctual with your kids These gestures will exhibit that these visits to your children are extremely precious for you. After all, kids need an assurance time and again that they are vital for you. Hence concentrate solely on them whenever you are in their company. During these visits, you should also reinforce through your actions or words that your children are your top most priority. How about spending some quality time with them by going for a bike ride with them or playing a game together? Do not focus on your text messages and emails while you are visiting your children.

Always try to be positive

Show enthusiasm whenever you discuss your next visit with them. Your plans should not get spoiled or overshadowed just because you have differences with the other parent. It may also help when you are aware of what activities the kids love doing while being with the other parent.

Stop arguing with your former spouse in front of your kids

Children may get upset when they see their parents arguing and calling names, particularly during pickup or drop off time. After all, visitation is such an occasion where you should solely focus on your little ones. Thus, it is essential for both the parents to ensure that the pickup and drop off times are pleasant and tension-free. You should try discussing your differences at a different time so that the process is a smooth one for all. Fix up meetings for discussing contentious matters with your ex-spouse or you can even hire a mediator to conduct your adult conversations in an amicable manner.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How A Divorced Dad Can Make A “Home” for His Kids

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

fathers rights attorneys Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmGoing through a divorce is never easy, and becoming a single dad is even harder.  You should try your best to make sure that your kids feel perfectly at home at your home. Take these steps to ensure that your children feel relaxed and at home while they are staying with you.

Ensure that your children have a separate sleeping space

Very often, older kids yearn for privacy and a separate room in the house. While some children may need to share their rooms, make sure that they are comfortable with their sleeping arrangements. Try your best to provide a separate room for them. Let them hang their favorite posters on the wall and give them space to keep their books and toys. They should also have their own dresser to store their clothes, it does not cost much to do. Welcome their input on how they want the decor of their room to be.

Try to set up fresh family traditions

This is a time to create new family traditions at your place that will thrill them. For instance, you may fix a tradition of eating waffles on Sunday mornings before going to church or it could be ice cream and video games every Wednesday. Think of activities where both your child and you can participate together. Such family activities will create a family bond. This exercise will be also helpful to recreate the bond that existed earlier at the home before the parents got divorced.

Hang family pictures on the wall

Your family is incomplete without your kids. So, take some time as well as give efforts to make sure that your special moments are captured.  Also make sure that these photographs are displayed all through the home. Photos of your relatives, pictures of holidays and school pictures enhance the ambiance of any home and improve stability. These photos are also helpful to create fresh memories of life after their parent’s divorce.

Always extend a warm welcome to the friends of your child

As your kids grow older, they start developing a closer bond with their friends. In fact, there will come a time when they would rather spend more time with friends than with their parents. An easy step that can resolve this mental dilemma is to invite your kids’ friends home while trying to brush off any rejection or hurt you could be feeling. Permit your children to ask their friends to stay over for the night at your place or simply let them hang out. This way, their dad’s home will appear more enjoyable for them when they mature.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Being a Single Mom & Mastering Parenting After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County child custody attorney; The Maggio Law FirmIt is a no-brainer that the divorcing of parents is probably one of the biggest hits a child can encounter in his or her life. That being said, it takes extra effort on the part of the separating parents to ensure that their little ones have to bear the minimum impact of the damage. Being a single mom is never easy. However, you can make sure that your child gets the right upbringing by following a few basic tips that we are sharing below.

Gather your support system

Single and recently divorced mothers can often feel terribly isolated and overwhelmed. Raising a kid is not a cakewalk, and doing it alone without a partner can be a more daunting prospect. The idea is to lean back on your close friends and family for support when you really need it. Don’t be hesitant to ask for help. If they genuinely care for you, they wouldn’t really mind babysitting your munchkin or picking them up from daycare when you have an urgent meeting.

Readjust your priorities

While you might be tempted to transform yourself into a superwoman overnight, you need to get your priorities straight. Be realistic about what you really need to do, and what you can give a miss. You need to lower your expectation from yourself and take a break. You don’t have to slave away at work all day, and also expect to keep you home tidy, serve only home cooked meals, and take care of your baby at the same time.

Get rid of the guilt

While it is understandable to feel partially responsible for your kid being brought up in a broken marriage, you need to stop bashing yourself for things that can no longer be fixed. You cannot keep battling with your thoughts of not being able to spend enough time with your little one or working too much or not being able to provide your baby the family love that he/she craves. Instead, focus on the brighter aspect of everything and live in the moment. Be happy that you have your kid with you and concentrate your energies in raising him/her the best way you can.

Pick up a hobby

While it might sound corny, finding time for pursuing a hobby will help you evolve into a better person. You don’t have to spend alot of money on doing things that you genuinely enjoy. Take up a painting class or join a book club. Focusing on what you like will not only help you let go of the bitter past but also provide you the hope for a better tomorrow!

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

 
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