These days, more parents opt for co-parenting and joint custody arrangements as opposed to sole custody in which only one parent gets rights over the child. However, many of these arrangements get made under the assumption that both parents will stay at a close distance of each other until the child is an adult.
Unfortunately, life does not always work out so easily. Sometimes, parents have no choice but to relocate. In these situations, how do parents handle long-distance co-parenting?
Keeping in regular contact
Parents discuss how some individuals cope with their long-distance parenting. First, it is usually not the choice of the relocating parent, and this is important for the other parent to understand. Someone may need to relocate due to military deployment or relocation orders. Others may need to return to their family home to care for their aging parents. Some get job opportunities that they simply cannot pass up, which requires relocation.
In these instances, it is still important for the co-parent to maintain regular contact and communication with their children to keep the bond strong and growing. Though in-person communication is off the table, that leaves many options thanks to technology.
Consider trying out different forms of communication like texting, video chatting or voice chatting on instant messaging programs. It can help to keep an open mind about modes of communication, especially since many children will feel very comfortable with technology-based contact.
Try out different combinations and see what works best. Then, create a schedule and stick to it as closely as possible, so regular communication becomes a part of life until the co-parent can move back again.