Michael E. Golub, P.A.

How children can benefit from joint-custody arrangements

If you, like so many others across Florida, are navigating your way through a separation or divorce, you probably have quite a bit on your plate. While figuring out how to rebuild your life after divorce can prove difficult in and of itself, learning how to do so when there are shared children involved can present even more obstacles.

While you may initially wince at the sound of the term, “joint-custody arrangement,” research shows that having such an arrangement can prove highly beneficial for your kids when compared with having your child live exclusively in your home, or your partner's. Of course, there are always exceptions, and no child should have to live with a parent who is abusive, neglectful and so on. However, under typical circumstances, children who spend time living in the homes of both parents tend to experience certain advantages.

Advantages of living in both parent homes

Many people mistakenly believe that shuffling between two homes is unnecessarily stressful for children of divorce, but this does not appear to be the case. Instead, children who live with both parents at different times tend to fare better emotionally than those living with only one parent. This may be due, at least in part, to the fact that it can be difficult for noncustodial parents to truly engage and immerse themselves in their children’s lives.

Parents who have their children living in their homes at least part of the time, on the other hand, are more likely to fully engage as parents, and in turn, their children are less likely to express feelings of sadness. They are also less likely to report sleep issues, concentration problems, stomachaches and headaches than their peers who reside exclusively with one parent or the other.

In summary, while a joint-custody arrangement can certainly be an adjustment for all involved, your concerns about potentially causing emotional damage by shuffling your child between two homes may be unwarranted.

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