How can I avoid arguments over summer custody arrangements?

The last things you want to do may be the first things you have to do to resolve issues with an ex-spouse. Compromise and cooperation are ideal solutions to troubles some New York parents have over summer child custody and visitation plans. Just remember an ideal solution is the goal, not necessarily the reality when it comes to dealing the other parent.

You can almost expect conflicts, if you wait until the kids are taking final exams to discuss summer vacations with an ex. To be fair, you really don't want to cause any more inconveniences for a former spouse than you want him or her to cause for you. Working together may be difficult, but everyone including the kids benefits if you do.

Yell into a pillow, grit your teeth or take a deep breath. Do whatever works before you make contact with an ex to plan out summer custody schedules. The earlier you propose summer trip days and dates, the more likely you'll achieve the results you want.

Cooperation is the way to fix vacation disputes. Start early and prepare to bargain and trade off days.

Don't book the cruise, flight or cross-country trip until the details have been approved and confirmed by you and the other parent. It's usually easier and often considerably cheaper to alter vacation schedule months not weeks in advance of summer vacation. Don't forget to include your children's wishes and wants in the schedule.

When possible, advance plan the entire summer, from day trips to day care. Set a good example and be flexible, even if your ex has been tough to handle since the divorce. Prepare for picnics rainouts, last minute work commitments and babysitter cancellations.

The communication and negotiation skills you use with an ex can make it a better summer for all parties involved. That includes the kids and right there is the whole point.

Source: The Our Family Wizard, "Summer Child Custody Plans," May. 01, 2015

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