You may be limited to just a few hours every couple of days, or an overnighter on the weekends, but this time with your child will go a long way in cementing your relationship with them and creating or maintaining a bond that will last a lifetime. A parent who has just gone through divorce and was awarded visitation time only, rather than shared custody, may lament the court’s decision, but it is important to keep a positive attitude for your child and to maximize the quality of time that you do have with your son or daughter. A San Jose child visitation and custody attorney can help you with visitation or custody and can offer suggestions on what to do with your child, how to make a plan, and other questions you may have.
Make a Schedule and Keep To It
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the building blocks for structure are consistency, predictability, and follow through. Structure is important for children—so important, in fact, that the CDC, recommends creating structure in the following ways:
- Being predictable, setting a schedule, and following through;
- Responding to your child’s behavior the same way each time;
- Creating a daily routine;
- Creating family or house rules; and
- Being positive by rewarding your child for following the rules/schedule
You can work with these guidelines to create a routine for your visitations, as well as adapt these rules for yourself. Your child needs routine, so make sure to follow through with your plans. Your child needs consistency, so make sure you create that in your home—your child should sleep in the same bed at night, have the same wakeup time and routine, get picked up on time (and possibly at the same time) each visitation day, and your activities should remain consistent. You do not have to do the same thing every time you spend time with your child, but make sure to add consistency and routine throughout the day.
Keep In Touch Between Visits
Technology is a blessing and a curse, but in the case of communicating with your children, there are certainly some upsides. Skype, phone calls, texting, email, and Facetime are all positive ways that you can keep in touch with your child in between visits. If you only see your child once or twice a week, you should be calling or contacting them every day or every few days. Ask them what they did in school, talk about their sports, tell them a story, and just keep the dialogue going so that when your visitation time comes, you do not have to start back up from scratch each time. Consistent communication helps build structure.
A Visitation Attorney Is Just a Phone Call Away for Help
Whether you are going through divorce, separation, or you are about to begin a custody or visitation battle, you need strong legal presence on your side to make your voice heard. Contact the law offices of Gemma V. Reyes to speak with one of our skilled San Jose child visitation attorneys at your soonest availability.