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Creating consistent expectations for children after divorce

When children of divorced parents in Tennessee spend time in two households, they may have to adjust to two sets of rules. However, children generally do better when there is one clear set of expectations, regardless of who they are living with. Even when two parents have different philosophies or parenting styles, they need to work out boundaries that both are willing to enforce.

Depending on how old the child is, he or she could be allowed to have a say in creating these guidelines. Ideally, parents will meet in person, and they will create rules that are in the child's best interest rather than try to win the conversation. Parents who are not able to work together on their own can introduce a mediator into the talks. Mediators can be effective in getting parents to overcome their differences and work toward a common solution.

Parents should be as flexible as possible when negotiating a set of rules that their children will live under. In some cases, it might be easier to win a concession from the other person by conceding something in return. If being flexible doesn't work, it may be necessary to ask a judge to make a ruling. However, it is important that parents realize that going to court means giving up some control over how to raise their kids.

Child custody and parenting time disputes may be among the issues parents must resolve after a divorce. In some cases, parents can work together to create conditions under which their sons and daughters can thrive. However, if necessary, an attorney could help a mother or father obtain a favorable outcome in a child custody matter. Mediation may also be an effective way to resolve disputes between parents.

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