Divorce negotiations can be challenging when potentially volatile issues like alimony and property division are discussed. However, divorcing parents in Illinois and around the country are usually able to suck it up and discuss child custody and visitation arrangements in a more productive way. This is because most parents want their children to be happy, and shielding them from the emotional trauma common in divorce cases is often paramount.
Bitter child custody battles can take a heavy toll on parents and children. However, a co-parenting arrangement can make the process much easier. Co-parenting works best when rules and punishments are consistent because a cooperative approach is ultimately better for most children.
In addition to protecting the children of divorce from emotional harm, co-parenting can also provide them with valuable life lessons. While venting in front of children or dragging them into domestic arguments sets a poor example, seeing their parents cooperate despite agreeing on very little teaches children about setting priorities and the complex nature of personal relationships.
Just as children tend to fare better when what is expected of them has been made clear, divorcing parents may find it easier to avoid custody and visitation disputes when parenting rules are firm. Experienced family law attorneys may assist their clients in this regard by helping them to draft parenting plans that establish clear boundaries while still allowing parents to exercise discretion. When the terms of these plans are too strict, parents may become resentful and seek out ways to get around the agreements.