As many divorcing parents in Michigan will find, negotiating a custody and visitation plan can be complicated, as there is no plan that fits every family. A common way to divide parenting time is alternating weeks with each parent. However, this might not work for all families. Accounting for all the factors that affect each family’s dynamics, and the common desire for parents to evenly share time with their children, parents can consider alternative parenting schedules.
Shared parenting does not always mean 50-50
Parents with younger children who share custody must consider the children’s needs while they grow. In the cases of much younger children, who often have an attachment with a primary caretaker and are dependent on their routines, parents might choose to temporarily divide parenting time into a 60-40 arrangement, providing the main caretaking parent of younger children with more parenting time until they can grow and adapt to the shared parenting schedule.
Alternative shared parenting plans
Parents who feel alternating weeks is not best for their families might still share custody with an alternative parenting schedule. These schedules include:
- Children spending 4 weekdays with one parent and 3 weekend days with the other parent or five days with one parent and 2 days with the other parent as part of the 60-40 schedule
- Children spending 2 days with one parent, 2 days with the other parent, 3 days with the first parent and then flipping the schedule for the next week
- Children spending 3 days with one parent, 4 days with the other parent, 4 days with the first parent, 3 days with the other parent and then flipping the schedule for the next week
Spending time with both parents is in the best interests of each child. However, how they do this will not look the same for each family.