Sharing custody isn’t always easy. In fact, it can be downright difficult. However, we truly believe that if there ever was a moment to rally together for the sake of your kids, the pandemic that is COVID-19 is it! Easier said than done, right? Today we’ll discuss how to manage shared custody arrangments under quarantine in Durham, NC.
First and foremost, if you have a shared custody in Durham agreement in place, try to stick to that agreement as much as possible while under quarantine in Durham, NC. That said, there are a lot of unknowns related to the coronavirus that you should address with your co-parent going into this. We’ve pulled together a few questions that address your children’s immediate safety, supervision and emotional stability. In much the same way that you created your separation agreement and shared custody agreement, be sure to keep it as professional as possible, and if necessary – contact your attorney.
- Who will provide care if your child gets sick?
- When and how you will seek medical care for your child in the event that they get sick? Be sure to also consult your pediatrician (most offices are sending out a protocol to follow during this time).
- Who will provide care to your kid(s) if you or your co-parent becomes sick?
- Who will provide care while your child’s school is closed?
- What additional provisions (food, water, clothing, medications) does your child need at each house while quarantined?
- How will your child communicate with the other parent if a quarantine gets in the way of your normal custody exchanges?
If you have a positive relationship with your co-parent or at least open lines of communication such that you can discuss these questions by phone, great! However, if previous experience has taught you that communicating by phone will just cause an argument, it may be best to communicate via email.
What if you have shared custody in Durham and you’re quarantined away from your kids?
It’s important for your children to feel safe and secure while under quarantine. If you have shared custody in Durham, now is not the time to emotionally sabotage the relationship with your co-parent and your kids. Reassure your kids that they are in good hands with your co-parent and that you have everything you need in order to stay safe and healthy while you are all quarantined. Be sure to offer multiple opportunities for your kids to call the parent they are separated from, rather than creating obstacles.
Kids thrive in structured environments. Therefore, find ways to create a temporary routine that incorporates your co-parent such as storytime with Mom after breakfast or bedtime with Dad before bed. There are a number of technologies available right now (Facetime, Facebook Messenger, Zoom, etc) that should make connecting with your children easy if you put in the effort.
How can you support your children’s emotional wellbeing while under quarantine in Durham, NC?
Whether you are dealing with shared custody in Durham, or not, kids of all ages are experiencing some level of stress related to this novel coronavirus. While they may not be hearing about it from school since everyone is at home right now, chances are your kids are paying attention to everything they hear including the news and the conversations you think they aren’t paying attention to.
As with any situation, you want to be able to answer your kids’ questions as honestly as you can without creating unnecessary fear or stress. We know that COVID-19 has a mortality rate of under 4% and that children seem to be at a lower risk. However, you can tell that everyone in the entire world is doing their part to help contain the virus and that our part right now is to stay at home. Make sure to offer reassurance that you and your co-parent are doing everything you can to keep them safe.
The most important thing you can do if you have shared custody in Durham is to be patient with your children as you navigate through quarantine together. Expect that there will be meltdowns from your little ones and silent treatment or anger from your teenagers. Everyone has been thrown from their normal routine (which may include being away from one of their parents), so try to be a little more patient right now.
Contact our Durham divorce lawyer if you need help with the overall divorce proceedings during this difficult time. Kevin E. Jones, can help you if you find yourself facing a divorce. He can also help with a DUI citation, injury and other legal matters in an ethical and proper manner. Don’t let your health, finances and overall well-being suffer because you’re unaware of your legal rights. our office before making any final decisions. Things happen and many people go without the proper representation when they need it most. Don’t be just another number.