Many Alabama parents who are negotiating a custody agreement stick to the traditional method of dividing time: alternating weeks between the parents’ homes. However, experts are beginning to advise parents that this may not be in the best interests of the children as there are a number of difficulties with this approach.
One of the major problems for the children is that they can experience upheaval and anxiety when they are faced with the prospect of being away from a parent for an entire week. Divorce is already stressful enough, and a long absence from the home of one parent can add to the emotional burden that the children bear.
On a practical level, the parents will need to communicate frequently in an alternating week schedule. If they do not have a harmonious relationship, this can be difficult. Moreover, being responsible for the children for a week straight can present logistical issues at a job as there is a need for possible frequent absences to accommodate the custody schedule. Experts are now recommending that parents consider custody arrangements that still implement a 50-50 split while rotating the children between the parents’ homes more frequently. This is better for the children since it would actually increase their stability and feelings of well-being while still giving each parent the time that they want.
Parents who are interested in incorporating more flexible arrangements into a custody agreement may consult with a family law attorney to learn more about what is possible. The attorney might suggest various solutions that could respect the parent’s custodial rights while still acting in the best interests of the children. Then, the attorney may help negotiate the custody agreement with the other parent, taking the case to court if there is no agreement to be reached.