Each Illinois family is unique and the parenting plan they choose after a divorce must fit their unique needs. While the goal might be to share custody equally, figuring out the perfect custody schedule takes time and thought.
Considerations when setting up a parenting schedule
Figuring out the ideal parenting plan is the result of careful consideration of a variety of factors. These factors include:
- The effect each parenting plan will have on the child’s emotional and physical well-being
- Each parent’s work and activities schedule
- The child’s activities
- The distance from each parent’s home to the child’s school, caretaking center and activities
The pros and cons of the alternating week parenting schedule
One common parenting time schedules is the alternating week schedule, where the child spends one week with one parent and then the next week with the other parent. This makes it easy to divide parenting time equally while providing time for the other parent to see the child during the week as well. However, if the parents are not in an amicable relationship, conflicts can erupt. And if the parent does not see the child during the week, this can affect the relationship between the child and each parent.
Alternative parenting plan options
There are other ways to divide time equally. To maintain constant contact between the child and each parent, parents might choose to divide parenting time in a 2-2-3 way, where one parent spends two days with one parent, two days with the other parent, then 3 days with the first parent, then the parents switch. Another similar plan is the 3-4-4-3 plan. Depending on the child’s age, they might also choose a schedule with one parent taking the week and the other taking long weekends or alternating long weekends.
Finding the right parenting time balance for your family is crucial. You also need to remain flexible and open, as the family’s needs will change over time.