Guidelines for Child Contact after Divorce (Part 1)

Your Thousand Oaks family attorney is aware that after a divorce, the emotional adjustment of the children is greatly impacted by the behavior of the parents.  The guidelines listed below will be useful in helping you and your spouse achieve meaningful continuing contact with your children.

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Do not expect these guidelines to answer every problem that arises or answer every question that comes up.  However, since they may prove helpful in a time of crisis or stress they are worthy of your attention.  Remember, they are simply guidelines, and if you and your spouse have difficulties with any of them your Thousand Oaks family attorney may be able to assist you in finding professionals who can help the two of you develop new ways of working together.


  1. Always put your children’s welfare first.  Do all that you can to ensure their emotional needs are met and that they have every opportunity to develop as normally as possible under the circumstances they find themselves in.


  1. Frequent and continuing contact with both parents that occurs normally and under the appropriate circumstances is both necessary and helpful to your children’s future welfare and development.


  1. Contacts should be pleasant for everyone involved, and should assist your children in maintaining a positive relationship with both you and your spouse.


  1. Both recreational and responsible time should be scheduled and included in the time the children spend with both parents. Grocery shopping, laundry and other chores, as well as library visits, free recreational activities, and park or beach time are all appropriate and beneficial activities.


  1. To assure the child that the future includes both parents, create rituals and memories.  Start a collection, make pancakes every Saturday, learn the computer together, etc.


  1. Plan contacts that take place outside of the home as well as in the home.  Develop a schedule and calendar together and keep a copy in each home, highlighting it with different colors for each parent’s time with the child.


If you are a parent and have been through a divorce or are contemplating one and would like to visit with a competent and knowledgeable Thousand Oaks family attorney, please contact Gary Mitchell by calling 888-452-1846.

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