Teens And Divorce: 3 Ways To Involve Your Child In Custody And Visitation Arrangements

Looking back, you never expected to get a divorce. Unfortunately, life happens, and your family is separating during your teen's most tumultuous years. While you may not be able to salvage your marriage, you can continue to work with your ex-spouse to support your child. Since having a say in the living arrangements helps older kid's adjust, you can use these strategies to make sure that they are on board with your child custody and visitation arrangements.

Open Up Dialogue

Once your teen knows about the divorce, they will naturally have many questions about what will happen. They may worry about being forced to change schools or give up their place on the football team. Your teenager may even be worried about things that you haven't considered yet such as who will take care of their pet while they visit the other parent or having to give up their room. Talk to your teen about their fears, needs and overall emotional response to the divorce so that you can begin working together to find a solution to all of their questions.

Look At the Facts

Teenagers are often hesitant to choose one parent over the other, so your child might not say if they are uncomfortable with leaving their home for summer visitation. To find out what your teen really needs, ask them to share their schedule. This way, you can incorporate things such as their job, sports schedule and volunteer hours into your visitation arrangements. Knowing that they can still do the things they love is important to teenagers, and they will be more likely to work with your new living arrangements when they know that their needs are included in the plan.

Document Your Decisions

Once your teenager has voiced their needs, discuss the options with your divorce attorney. If your ex-spouse is not in agreement, then your teenager may be called upon to speak with the lawyers or judge to help with the final decision. Having documentation of things such as your teenagers work schedule can also help prove that they have a reason for requesting the schedule for visitation that you present.

Although talking about divorce with your kids is never easy, it is important for teenagers to feel like they have a say in their future. By knowing how to talk to your teen about their needs, you can make sure that they adjust well to the new family dynamics. For more information, contact companies like Kleveland Law.