Being a non-custodial father is a challenging situation, especially in today’s society in which fathers are usually very involved in their child’s life. Fathers who find themselves in this position need to remember that building the relationship with their children should remain the focus.
It’s all too easy to fall into the habit of thinking that you can’t have a strong relationship just because you don’t get the time you feel you should. Instead of thinking in this manner, try to remember that quality time is much better than quantity of time.
Terms of the parenting plan
Just because you don’t have the in-person time that you think you should with your children doesn’t mean that you can’t still do things with them. You might consider seeking virtual visits as a way to remain connected with them between the physical visits you have.
Virtual visits utilize technology for you to interact with the children. This can include texting, video chats and other methods. By having the terms allowing these visits placed in the parenting plan, you’re ensuring that they will happen.
One of the benefits of having virtual visits with your children is that they can see that you care about them even when they aren’t with you. The on-screen time you spend with them can involve many things. You might read your toddler a story before they go to bed or spend time helping your teen with their homework. Some visits might be spent just having heart-to-heart talks.
Working with your ex
Another key to making things work when you don’t have equal amounts of parenting time is to work with your ex to foster the relationship. Your ex is a primary influence in your child’s life. If the child sees that both parents are working as a team to co-parent, they might feel like they are in a secure family even though they are splitting their time between both homes.
You and their mother can agree to work as a team to parent the children. Mutual respect should be the cornerstone of this. Communicating directly and involving each other in events that are important to the children are imperative.
The parenting time schedule is one of the most important things that you’ll include in the parenting plan. Make sure that this is set based on what the children need, but be realistic about what you can do. Your parenting time with the child should be times for bonding, so you should have it set to where you won’t have to worry about needing to cancel.