Child Custody Parenting Plans: Guidelines

 

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Joint Custody vs. Sole Custody

The best interest of the children is co-parenting through joint custody!

Sole custody should be sought only when one parent is abusive, mentally ill, alcoholic, or a danger to the children or one’s self. Assuming these are not a problem, the following statements about joint custody and sole custody arrangements hold true:


Joint Custody – Parents’ Advantages
Co-Parenting will allow input on major decisions from both parents.
Co-Parenting will do away with artificial and "Disneyland" types of parenting.
Co-Parenting will more evenly disperse the responsibility of raising the children.
Co-Parenting will not make one parent feel that he/she has lost one’s own children.
Co-Parenting will allow parents enough time to have parenting time, not just visitation.
Co-Parenting will allow both parents to inquire about information concerning the children.
Co-Parenting will allow for more flexibility on parenting times, without misinterpretations.
Co-Parenting will allow for flexibility on parenting times, while having something to fall back on.


Joint Custody - Children’s Advantages
Co-Parenting will show the children that they have a home with both parents.
Co-Parenting will reassure the children that both parents want what’s best for them.
Co-Parenting will allow children to develop lasting, meaningful ties with both parents.
Co-parenting will allow the children to learn from both parents all that life has to offer.
Co-Parenting will allow children easier access to both parents, no matter who they are with.
Co-Parenting will give the children the feeling that they are loved and wanted by both parents
Co-Parenting will allow the children more flexibility when wanting to spend time with a parent.
Co-Parenting will allow the children to ask for extra time without feeling guilty of hurting the other.


Sole Custody - Parent’s Disadvantages
Gives one parent only a few parenting rights!
Gives one parent no parenting time only "visitation."
Gives one parent the feeling that one’s love doesn’t count.
Gives one parent the feeling that one has lost one’s children.
Gives one parent the feeling that they are not good enough to be a parent.
Gives one parent, at most, eighteen percent of time to be with one’s children.
Gives one parent no meaningful parenting role to play in the children’s lives.
Gives one parent no rights to make decisions: medical, dental, school, and childcare.


Sole Custody - Children’s Disadvantages
Children will not have easy access to the non-custodial parent.
Children will lose the non-custodial parent being actively involved in their lives.
Children will have more of an uncle/aunt type relationship with non-custodial parent.
Children will feel guilty when they ask to spend more time with the non-custodial parent.
Children will be caught, more often, in the middle of disagreements between their parents.
Children will have no extra time with the non-custodial parent unless the custodial parent agrees.
Children, especially young ones, may not receive that crucial bond with the non-custodial parent.
Children will feel a great loss because of the small amount of time allowed for them to see their non-custodial parent.

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