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Barbara L. Jouette, Attorney, P.C.
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Sharing custody requires making adjustments

When parents divorce, they often come to realize just how much they love their children and want to spend time with them. On one hand, raising children can be tiring and even frustrating, but the rewards and companionship make the effort more than worthwhile. And shared custody situations can certainly cut into the time a parent is able to spend with his or her child.

Your parenting plan will tell you when you will have custody or visitation, but you will be left to figure out how to respond emotionally to your new circumstances. During those times when your child is in your ex's custody, you may feel as if you are not as in control as you once were. After all, you had grown accustomed to being a part of every decision made regarding your child, but now your ex will be mostly calling the shots during his or her custodial periods.

So while it may be tempting to try to assert your feelings or opinions about your ex's parenting methods, it is typically best to refrain from doing so. You may feel your ex is too permissive or stern, but remember, he or she has parenting rights too. Remaining flexible and letting go of the reigns a little bit can serve both you and your child well in the long run.

However, you also have every right to express concern if you believe your ex is in some way endangering or neglecting your child. If this is the case, you may want to discuss the matter with a family law attorney. It is possible that a modification of custody terms is in order, but you need to understand how to effectively present your case for the action to the court. An attorney can advise you on whether you have grounds for modification and act on your behalf if your request has legal merit.

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