Visitation plans: difficult for both the children and the parents

Going through a divorce is inevitably going to impact any children involved. For many kids, a divorce means adjusting from having one life to having two separate lives - one with each parent. Sometimes children have to get used to a custody plan while others learn to live with scheduled visits.

In some situations, one parent has visitation rights that allow him or her to spend time with the children. But for some parents, a phone conversation or a brief visit is not adequate for developing a parent-child relationship.

One parent notes that visitation is difficult. There is no way to fully understand what the child is going through because there is no in-person communication. If the child is having a difficult time in school or is struggling with friends, they may think that their parent doesn't really care because they can't see the reaction when they are talking.

Even when time is spent face-to-face, it can be difficult for the child to adjust back into the presence of the parent. To the child, it may seem like the parent is intentionally not around. This particular parent found that it took a lot of work to connect with her son when they weren't around each other all the time.

But despite the strain in the relationship, most parents would agree that visitation rights are better than not having any interaction with their children at all. Visitation schedules are approved by the court - the parent has to adhere to the schedule laid out unless an agreement is made otherwise.

Ultimately, the judge can determine what sort of custody or visitation plan is in the best interests of the child. Parents may find that even if the time is limited, there are still ways to assure the child that the "absent parent" still loves and cares for them.

Source: Huffington Post: "When Visitation Phone Calls Are All You Have," Sonya Huber, Aug. 3, 2011.

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