You have spent years building your career and are proud to provide for your family. However, the very work that meets your children’s needs could impact your ability to spend time with them after your divorce. If you have a demanding work schedule, travel often for your job or keep irregular hours, can you maintain your career and keep a strong relationship with your children?
Remember that your child custody arrangement is about the needs of your children.
In every child custody arrangement, the needs of the child must come first. It is important to be honest with yourself, your spouse and the court about how your work schedule may impact your ability to meet your child’s daily needs.
Be ready to ask difficult questions. If your child lives with you during the workweek or if the court grants you full custody, how will you handle issues that might arise? If your child is sick, is your work schedule flexible enough to allow you to be home with them? For younger children, will your schedule allow you to manage their bedtime and their morning routine?
Communicate with your employer.
You can answer many of those difficult questions by speaking to your employer about your divorce. As Forbes notes, your manager may be open to a more flexible work schedule that meets your family’s needs. Proactive planning can allow you to handle your parental responsibilities while meeting your responsibilities in the office.
Create a parenting plan based on your unique situation.
If joint custody is the best arrangement for your family, consider working with your spouse to create a plan. Sit down with a mediator to discuss your parenting schedule and responsibilities as well as your plan for scheduling conflicts and emergencies. Working together could also provide a strong foundation for co-parenting in the future.
While your work schedule may create unique challenges, those challenges are not barriers to custody. Your attorney can help you create a parenting plan that maximizes both your parenting time and your opportunities in the office, allowing you to provide both quality time and a high quality of life for your family.