When you divorce, you will put some rules in place with the court’s help. These govern legal decision-making and the right to see or live with the child.
Yet what about the little things? No court will create an order that Tommy must get smoked salmon on rye for breakfast or do his homework before going out to play. Those are the sort of things that you, as parents, control and may or may not require rules for.
Many things do not need rules
Making a rule about what your child gets for breakfast is probably unnecessary. Making a rule that he must eat his vegetables before getting dessert could be helpful. Especially if you fear your child will play one of you off the other to get his own way.
Here are some other areas where consistent rules between households could help:
- Driving: If you take away your child’s right to borrow the car for a week because you caught him pulling donuts outside his grandmother’s care home, the last thing you want is for your co-parent to lend them theirs.
- Drinking: Despite the fact that your child is nowhere near 21 years of age, you know they are likely to try drinking soon. You need to set the rules together as parents. It will not work if your spouse grounds your daughter for drinking a wine cooler at a party and you make her cocktails for her 16th.
- Staying out late: Curfews do not necessarily need to be identical in each household. One of you may live in an area where it is safer to be out at night, or one may live further from town, requiring your child to leave much earlier to get home by nine. Make sure you discuss things between you first so that you can explain any differences to your child.
Getting legal help to settle divorce and custody issues in a spirit of cooperation will make working together to raise your child easier for all.