It’s important for children to have a clear set schedule of where they’ll be and with whom when it comes to living under two roofs.

Have a visual calendar set up in a location of each house, i.e. the kitchen or living room, where the child can clearly see the days and nights they will be staying at each household. Try your very best to adhere to this schedule.

When events overlap where both parents will be present, i.e. a ballet recital or soccer game, let the child know this and place it on the calendar as well. This can alleviate any unknowns the child may have as far as who will be or not be attending any special events.

The schedule should not be viewed as an outline or something that “might” be happening. It should be viewed as an agreement. Business contracts are not drawn up to act as mere outlines for what “might” be acceptable. Children’s schedules should be treated the same way. Do everything within your power to adhere to what you put on the schedule, particularly with respect to where and with whom the child will be staying.

With that being said, life does happen. Work schedules can change at the last minute, emergencies can and will arise. Try your best to keep these occurrences to a minimum. When unforseeables do occur that alter your child’s schedule, particularly with respect to where they will be staying and with whom, let the child know as soon as possible that their schedule will be changing, and what the new schedule looks like.

And finally, make the calendar fun! Pick out a special calendar with your child full of bright animal pictures or a favorite superhero. Have different colored markers to differentiate the stays at the two households. Get stickers to put on the special events. Make creating the calendar with your child a special, bonding experience.

Many couples going through divorce have a difficult time peacefully creating a set schedule for their children. An experienced legal professional may be able to assist with this situation.