When a relationship ends, coming to an agreement on a parenting time schedule is not always an easy process. During the relationship, both mom and dad had access to their kids every day. But when mom and dad have separate homes, compromise plays a big role in navigating the new normal of co-parenting.
When it comes to navigating into separate households, acceptance of the fact that no one is going to get to spend as much time with the kids as they want is key.
In an ideal world, each parent would be able to see their kids every day. Unfortunately, this is not a practical idea. Work schedules, school schedules, extra curricular activities. The list goes on!
In addition to the lack of practicality, the reality is, the two parents are ending a relationship. It is reasonable to assume there will need to be a little space put into place. To get to spend time every day with the children, spending time with your co-parent would required. Even in the most amicable circumstances, spending every day with your ex is not exactly ideal, when it comes to moving on.
With all of this in mind, how do parents decide who gets the kids and when?
Various factors come in to play, but at the end of the day, it comes down to what is in the best interest of the children.
Referring to the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines is a good start, and a good reference when in doubt. In addition, the Indiana Supreme Court has developed a new parenting time calendar app (currently in beta version), based off of the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines. After answering some basic questions about the children, such as their ages, and their school system, a twelve month calendar is generated. The user is able to modify certain components, to ensure it best reflects their personal families needs. The family is given a code for this calendar, which can be shared with the other party. This app is designed to be used for families with children age 3 and above.