Custody arrangements

Lynsey - posted on 03/18/2016 ( 8 moms have responded )




Hi. I am looking for help in figuring out the best custody arrangement for my 4 year old son. My ex and I split Jan 2015. He is quite the handful. Currently the arrangement is I have him tues-sat and he has him sat-tues. Our son will be starting JK in September and I dont think this arrangement will work because I wont have any weekend time with him. I dont know what the best solution is. We live close to each other (I have had to move back in with my parents). We currently do not have any lawyers involved. He wants 50/50, I do not. What custody arrangements have worked for you in the past?
I am so sad about this :(


Katie - posted on 03/21/2016




I have shared custody of my 2 younger children. 50/50
This was NOT court ordered as even though I would like to be selfish and my ex partner was a pitiful partner who I would not wish on any woman. He loves and cares for our children. I wouldn't dream of telling him he cant have LESS access than I do.

Sit down and think about your reasons. Write them all down. Then read them back to yourself. Now cross out reasons that are to do with your emotions and not your children's. Now look at what's left. Are they valid reasons? Will the children be in harms way? not cared for properly? will it affect their education? Their mental health?

If the answer is no. Then you don't have a leg to stand on. Unless you make him out to be a villian in the courts or stretch the truth to convince a judge otherwise - that's called parental alienation.

We do Monday - Monday but in eachothers weeks we swap one night. That way the kids dont go a full week without seeing each parent at all. My youngest started shared care before she turned 3 years old.

You will only know if it works for your child once its started. If your childs distressed and it does start to affect them then its up to you both to discuss this and put your personal differences aside. If your ex cant be amicable or discuss things like a mature human being THEN I would be insisting on a third party to oversee the discussions.

Sarah - posted on 03/20/2016




Evelyn gives good advice, as do all of the other responses. You are equally entitled to have your parenting time, and the sooner you agree to terms AND get it signed by a judge the better. I work as a school nurse, I see all ages pre-K thru HS. For a little guy longer periods alternating will be easier for him. One week with mom and the next with dad. Little kids that I see that do one evening with dad(or mom) a week and every other weekend, tend to be absent, tardy and/or fatigued after the night with the part time parent. When you can parent him for 7, straight days there is more opportunity for a consistent bedtime and morning routine. Then shift to the other home; rather than flip-flopping back and forth.


View replies by

Ev - posted on 03/19/2016




I have to agree with the other ladies on this...but you need to step back and really look at what is best for your son. Equal time with both parents is best but not always the case. If you guys stay in the same town and so on, one week with mom and one week with dad is a good trade off. It is more stable than a lot of kids have. Also I know it is not easy to not have the kids around. I had to make a choice years ago for their best interest not mine. I chose to take the offered joint custody and let dad have primary care because I could not fight him anymore because of money and it was not in their best interest to be pawns. Ask the ladies that posted here...they know my story. I know you do not want the child to be with dad as often as you because you gave birth to him and so on...but the fact remains he and the child need to have a relationship too. As it stands you have more of the week than dad does. Its not easy as I said. It is hard not to have the kids with you. I died inside when I let them go. You need to work out what is best for him. 50-50 is not a bad thing and then on the weeks you do not have him maybe you could do some things for yourself.

Michelle - posted on 03/19/2016




I have done 50/50 shared care for 11 years.
We started off with week about and like Jodi said the changeover was on a Friday. That way you had the kids on the weekend before they drove us mad.
I now do 3 weeks and still every 2nd weekend. The boys are older and it's a bit more stable for them.
You pretty much have 50/50 care anyway but like Jodi said, you need to put aside your feelings and do what's best for your child.

Jodi - posted on 03/18/2016




At this age, alternative weeks works for kids. I see a lot of it amongst my students. Admittedly, my students are older, but they have also had this arrangement for a long time. One week at mum's house, one week at dad's house. It is less disruptive than 2 days at dad's then 2 at mum's, etc. If the swap was on a Friday after school (go home to dad's instead of mum's), then they also have the entire weekend to adjust to the new household (where it is likely rules and expectations are a little different).

I do understand you find it hard not being with your child all the time, but I'm sure dad feels the same way. You need to step back and look outside of how you feel about it.

I also recommend getting any agreed arrangement in court orders so that it is clear to all parties and protects both you and your child.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 03/18/2016




ATTORNEYS. That is what is recommended.

Get your custody/visitation/support set in a court of law. sounds like you are currently almost at 50/50, so what is the problem with continuing 50/50? Week on, week off.

Dove - posted on 03/18/2016




Unless there is solid evidence that either parent is a harm to the child... 50/50 w/ both parents is the child's right. Depending on drop off and pick up times I don't see any major reason why the arrangement you have now won't work (and to say you don't want 50/50 when that's almost what you have now is kind of silly)... maybe every other week you can make the switch on Sunday instead of Saturday? That would be 50/50 and not really any different than what the child is used to right now.

Lynsey - posted on 03/18/2016




I also want to add, its not that I dont want 50/50.... I want what is best for my son. What I meant is that it is just hard for me not to be with my son all the time :(
Is it best to do alternating weeks? 2-3-2? 3-4? etc.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms