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Author Topic: Advice on proposed parenting plan  (Read 3427 times)

IceMountain

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Advice on proposed parenting plan
« on: Aug 16, 2005, 10:51:25 PM »
My ex and I are going to mediation next month.  I have a proposed  parenting plan and delivered it to her almost a year ago.  It has been a long process to get to this point (mediation).  I met with my new attorney a couple weeks ago.  We agreed that giving my ex a copy of the plan may have been intimidating to her and also probably ticked her off because she likes to be in control.  I honestly never looked at it that way.  I took the advice and parenting plan samples from this site and adjusted it to our situation.  It includes all of the suggested topics that pertain to our situation.  In all honesty I think it is a very reasonable plan for anyone truly interested in co-parenting their child.

Background:  My son is 7 years old and lives 220 miles from me.  We currently have the standard EOW and 6 weeks in the summer along with shared holidays from 9:00 to 6:00.  We have both moved since the divorce.

I am asking for the entire summer minus 2 weeks, holiday weekends rather than days, EOW, Fridays & Mondays that school is not in session on my weekend, every other spring break and shared Xmas break.  For Xmas I am asking for alternating years of day school dismisses to the 26th or the 26th until the day before school resumes.  

I asked her, after talking to my attorney, if she had had a chance to go over the parenting plan and make notes as to what she would propose.  I suggested that we try to negotiate and agree to what we could before mediation and court.   She said she doesn't agree with 90% of the plan!!  ... and that I am not taking into consideration that my son's school and friends are with her!  

Am I totally off-base here with what I am proposing?  Am I missing something that would make her truly not agree to 90% of the proposal?  All I want is to co-parent my son.  I want to have the same courtesy during the summer that she has during the school year!   I want to be able to spend a holiday with my son without watching the clock and spending 1/2 the time driving.  I want my son to be able to fully participate in the summer recreation and sports he joins in my town.  My son has friends in my town and my wife's family members who think he is the greatest kid in the world (I have to agree).

She is pro se and I have an attorney and a well-written plan of action.  

My only downfall is that I am a truck driver.  I work a rotating shift where I have every other week and weekend off.  I'm looking for local work now that I have 6 months experience behind me, but I know my job could potentially hurt my case.  I know the case will go to court.  I am desperately trying to find a local job before that will happen.

Any opinions?  


ocean

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RE: Advice on proposed parenting plan
« Reply #1 on: Aug 17, 2005, 07:48:43 AM »
I think that your plan sound reasonable. What did you do for this summer? Did you put exact dates for summer with times (for the long weekends too)? Also check with the school calendar...Easter by us has been seperated from Passover...(spring break)...I just read someone's plan that stated whichever vacation was longer. Good luck!

dsm

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Stick to your plan
« Reply #2 on: Aug 17, 2005, 08:30:45 AM »
I think it is very reasonable.   And personally, I don't think that your truck driving schedule will hurt your case - other than summer time where you would have your son for weeks on end.  What is your plan for that when you have to be on the road?  

Your split of the year is very similar to what we had when we were NCP to my SD.  We had one weekend a month with us doing all travel, every break from school, and summer from weekend after school let out to weekend before school began.   And we live a little less than 200 miles from my DH's ex.

Now that we have custody, my SD's mother gets EOW with us doing half travel for one of the weekends, holiday breaks are split, she gets 2 weeks at the start of summer and 2 weeks in Aug before school starts again.   It does not affect my SD's relationship with her friends or school or sports.   True it has meant that her mom has had to be flexible and take her time with my SD here in our town some weekends versus traveling back to their town when there is something going on (volleyball games for example), but it is something that would have to be planned for no matter where the child lived.

So I say, you stick to your guns with your plan.  It is solid.  Your ex is not agreeing because she didn't come up with the idea.  Wait and see what she doesn't agree with, and then DO NOT MAKE ANY DECISIONS ON THE SPOT!!!!   Request 72 hours to review and evaluate - and then do so without emotion - try to look at it like a business plan - what can you compromise on?   And what is your plan for the summer?

Good luck!
==============================================================================

dsm - 34
DH - 38
SD - 15
LO - 9
BB - 2
------------------
2 Cheap Entertainment cats - Snoop & Dagger - 5 years and counting.....
dsm - 44
DH - 48
SD - 26
LO - 19
BB - 12
1 demon who provides cheap entertainment of the fluffy and furry kind.

My mantra - it's time for me to do for me and mine so we can live in the present and not fret about the past nor worry about the future.  What is, is.

joni

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RE: Advice on proposed parenting plan
« Reply #3 on: Aug 17, 2005, 08:43:31 AM »


You plan is absolutely reasonable

My SD lives 700 miles away and flies to us 2 weekends a month, we alternate the holidays, we also get her extra days when she's not in school around a weekend and it falls on our weekend.  We get half the summer plus 3 days.

The holiday 9 hours is BS.  Your son spends 9 hours in a car to commute to spend 9 hours with you?  Mom's an idiot.

I would look for local work to strengthen your case.  Who watches your child if you are working?  Is it a relative, like a grandma?  That's a blood relative and not a weakness.  It's your choice when the children are with you as to who you have watch your son.

IF you can't get a new job, coordinate your weekends around your work schedule when you get to court.  My husband is on call at hospitals.  Sometimes a hospital schedules a month in advance, other hospitals put out their schedule 6 months in advance.  My husband notified the 8 hospitals he covers that he can't take call the 2nd and 4th weekends of the month.  That was the end of it.  His schedule actually then took a priority during our visitation negotiation because the other party and judge were able to see what he did to accomodate it.


IceMountain

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RE: Stick to your plan
« Reply #4 on: Aug 17, 2005, 12:16:48 PM »
I realize she's just being stubborn and is ticked that she now has to look at things from my point of view, which is a definite change for her.

Spring Break:  states that the regular wknd schedule is in effect and that if it coincides with Easter, then the Easter break takes precedence

Summer Break:  I started working the rotating schedule this past summer when I had him for 5 weeks (He was attending a year-round school and only had 6 weeks off).  I work from Wednesday to Tuesday so I would not see him on Thursday and he would go back to his mom on Friday, then my wife would pick him up on Sunday, I would not see him on Monday and I would be home on Tuesday.  So he really only went 4 days every two weeks that he did not see either me or his mom.  And when he was with my wife I was able to talk to him at least 3 times a day, which I'm not able to do when he is with his mom.  Although not a blood relative, my wife does not work in the summer so she takes care of my son when I am not home.

He is back to a regular school now so he will have the normal 12 weeks off.  When he is here he plays soccer & baseball, participates in library programs and does swimming lessons.  With only 6 weeks, the only thing he can fully participate in is swimming lessons.  Everything else lasts 8-10 weeks.


IceMountain

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RE: Advice on proposed parenting plan
« Reply #5 on: Aug 17, 2005, 12:28:39 PM »
Summer:  It states that I get him starting with the 1st weekend after school dismisses, Fri. or Sun. depending on who's weekend it is.  Summer ends the weekend before school resumes on Fri. or Sun. depending on who's wknd it is.  Mom gets 2 weeks, in 1 or 2 week blocks, with 30 days notice.

Holiday wknds are specified and always take precedence over regular parenting/custodial time.

Easter holiday (Fri. to Sun.) takes precedence over regular wknd schedule.  Also regular wknd schedule in effect for spring break.  His school does not combine spring break with Easter and does not have the Friday before or Monday after Easter off school.  


Kitty C.

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Just to let you know what we went thru.............
« Reply #6 on: Aug 17, 2005, 12:55:38 PM »
We're in IA, too.  DS's dad was in CA and DS would spend all summer with him as well.  It started one week after school was out to one week before school started.  Yes, DS never got to play ball here, nor participate in any Cub Scout summer activities (prompting him to drop out), and we NEVER spent a 4th of July together. Over the course of 9 years, he missed out on a LOT here.  But well after DS's dad died 3 years ago, I asked DS if he would have had it any different, with the possibility of doing all those things and spending time with his friends in the summer.  His response:  'No way!!!!'  

So when your ex really balks at the summer proposal, tell her what I've told you.  That a MOTHER 'strongly' recommends spending as much of the summer as possible with the father, or the child could very well hold it against her in years to come.  I'm still not sure DS doesn't hold it against me that he couldn't see his dad any more than he did, even tho it was financially unfeasible.

And I'd give up everything I own if it meant DS could have his Dad back...........
Handle every stressful situation like a dog........if you can't play with it or eat it, pee on it and walk away.......

dsm

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You've got a solid plan then.
« Reply #7 on: Aug 17, 2005, 01:58:00 PM »
Sorry - I must have missed that you have summer all figured out.  It's great that your wife is able to step in and be there for you.

Let your ex blow smoke.  You hold strong to your plan - and like I said - absolutely do not agree to any changes on the spot.  Request the time to review and analyze - and then counter with what you are willing to compromise on.  When you are reviewing, consider the big picture - and whether the point is one that you can give some on.  Like if a meeting time is proposed by you to be 5pm but your ex comes back and says that it has to be 7pm and uses work schedule as her excuse.....then when you review it, you see that 7pm would be okay, but then make the next exchange time to be later so that you get those hours back.  Does that make sense?

Again, I think what you have laid out makes all the sense in the world, and you should just go for it.   You've got some precedence already set too for your wife to be able to care for him when you are on the road so if she starts in with 'but he should be with me' - you say that you have it taken care of, it is how it has been for x number of years/months/etc and that is that.  

When is your next meeting?
==============================================================================

dsm - 34
DH - 38
SD - 15
LO - 9
BB - 2
------------------
2 Cheap Entertainment cats - Snoop & Dagger - 5 years and counting.....
dsm - 44
DH - 48
SD - 26
LO - 19
BB - 12
1 demon who provides cheap entertainment of the fluffy and furry kind.

My mantra - it's time for me to do for me and mine so we can live in the present and not fret about the past nor worry about the future.  What is, is.

IceMountain

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RE: You've got a solid plan then.
« Reply #8 on: Aug 17, 2005, 06:38:38 PM »
Our first mediation session is in a couple of weeks.  The ex is already stating it's a waste of time because we are going to trial, so I'm not expecting too much.  But, I will go in preparted with documentation, school calendars, calendars for the next two years showing the proposal all laid out, and the list goes on...

I'm happy to finally get to this stepping stone in the mod., and am prepared to make the most of it and prove to her and the mediator that I have thought everything through thoroughly and that I truly have the best interest of my son at heart.

I have a lawyer and she is pro se.  My lawyer will review anything before it is signed, but with her stubborness I don't expect anything to be figured out anyway.

As far as other changes go, I also have a section in the plan that addresses how these will be handled... and basically nothing will be agreed to orally, but in writing... she's pulled too many 'that's not what I agreed to' punches in the past for me to leave that to chance.


 

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