All families are complex, but some are more so than others. For example, families who have children and youth with neurodiverity, or behavior disorders, or post adoption issues, have many factors to consider on a daily, even hourly basis, that are not common to neurotypical families. Working out a parenting plan is one area where complex families often find themselves stuck.
Complex families may have a child who is unable to manage transitions – this factor makes deciding how best to share parenting time a very different type of decision. The parents may both be able to meet the child’s high needs, and both may be wishing to share time. However, if the child can’t manage the changing environment from one house to another, then standard parenting plans and scheduling aren’t going to work.
Another example is families in which the child has severe challenges with emotional dysregulation. It may that while both parents are equally committed to the child’s well- being and both want to maintain a strong presence in the child’s life – it may that only parent is able to effectively manage the child’s emotional states. That is rarely the fault of the parent, but rather, it’s simply the way the child’s brain responds to invisible triggers. Again, this makes standard parenting arrangements impossible and it means that one parent might experience less time with the child than s/he would choose, while the other is being worn out from too much time managing as a single parent.
A third example is when the child has experienced early abandonment prior to adoption. Such children often can’t cope with further loss and so a parenting plan that allows both parents to have some kind of daily contact is best, as opposed to a more standard plan that allows alternating homes on a more lengthy basis.
Divorcing couples in complex families also find that simply determining what they need to take to their lawyer for working out the financial aspect of separation can be a daunting task. The normal information about taxes and income and assets and pensions etc may be complicated with extra information on adoption subsidies, autism subsidies, therapeutic expenses, special equipment costs… the list can go on. Trying to determine which parent will maintain parenting responsibilities for the special needs of the child requires further consideration in most parenting arrangements.
The emotional aspect that divorcing parents in a complex family experience can be overwhelming and lead to hasty decisions that are later regretted. Careful and guided consideration of the feelings and emotions can help clients to:
- make informed decisions
- provide a safe place to explore feelings of anger, guilt, fear, sadness and frustration.
- help reconstruct emotional boundaries when dealing with an ex-spouse
- help with parenting plans and custody arrangements that are specific to the child’s special needs
- help the parents avoid emotional overwhelm and manage their emotions
As a Divorce Coach specializing in Complex Families, I can help clients navigate these special circumstances. Call me 250-716-9101 or email [email protected]
Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Brenda_McCreight/207058
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8634340