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3 strategies to make long-distance co-parenting work

On Behalf of | May 20, 2024 | Family Law, Life After Divorce |

Being away from your child makes putting in extra work to strengthen your relationship all the more important. Although the miles between you may separate you physically, there are ways you can stay connected emotionally.

Maintain virtual visitation schedules

Consistent virtual visitation can allow you to foster and maintain a meaningful relationship with your child when face-to-face interaction is not possible.

Find a communication tool that your child is comfortable with. Then, establish a fixed schedule and honor it religiously. Avoid making last-minute changes to prevent causing your child unnecessary stress. Regular communication will be the lifeline of your relationship, and respecting it is important.

As your child grows, their needs will evolve. But whether you set up hour-long video calls or play online games together, these little moments are key to ensuring your child feels your presence and love despite the distance.

Collaborate with your co-parent

Teamwork with the other parent is essential. If you’re the parent living from a distance, the custodial parent becomes critical in facilitating your child’s availability during virtual visits, arranging long-distance travel and keeping you informed about your child’s life. The plans you set, including video chats, should also be considerate of the other parent.

Communication and cooperation between both parents will help set clear expectations, establish boundaries and avoid conflicts, creating a healthier environment for your child.

Embrace creativity

Don’t let distance stifle your creativity in bonding with your child.  Beyond video calls, you can share meals virtually or enjoy movies together online.  If your child seems down, sending them a simple but meaningful gift, such as their favorite food or game, could make their day.

These gestures may seem small, but they leave a lasting impression. It shows your child that you are thinking of them and want to spend time with them no matter how far away you are.

As you draw up plans to meet with your child, it is best to consult a family law attorney if any part of your co-parenting agreement seems unclear. They may help clarify your responsibilities and minimize misunderstandings with the other parent.

Although the distance can make things challenging, do not underestimate the impact your dedicated efforts can have on your child. Every phone call, video chat and gesture helps your child feel valued, loved and secure.