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Visitation After Divorce is Important

A Michigan judge made headlines in early July when she jailed three teens for refusing to go to lunch with their father.

The story in the Detroit Free Press outlines just how nasty divorce cases can get, but also just how important it is for children to maintain relationships with both parents in most cases following divorce.

It goes without saying that parents love their children in spite of their ability to remain married to their spouses. When the post-divorce relationship with your spouse becomes strained, remember these benefits of maintaining visitation with your children and use them as a reminder to soldier through this difficult time for your children’s sake.

Bonding

The quality of attachment relationships plays an important role in young children’s well-being. It’s about quality, more than quantity of time spent with your children. It is beneficial for your children to still see you as an authority figure who is involved, emotionally available, supportive and focused on their day-to-day lives, according to Psychology Today.

Mental Health

A study published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health in April 2015 found that children are mentally healthiest when they are able split their time between both divorced parents.

The study’s author even found that “children who have two homes and move frequently report less stress symptoms than those who live in one stable home after their parent’s separation,” according to a Yahoo! Parenting article about the study.

What to do When Visitation is Challenged

Sometimes older children have clearly defined reasons for not wanting to visit their noncustodial parent, and this can present a challenge to the custodial parent. Some custodial parents can face jail time for failing to abide by a legally binding visitation agreement.

If you find yourself in this position, it is recommended that you speak with an attorney to determine your next step. In some cases, it may be recommended that the court appoint an attorney to represent your child and his/her wishes.

If you feel the post-divorce relationship with your ex-spouse has deteriorated to the point that you’re having difficulty maintaining your visitation agreement, please call us for a consultation. We can offer advice on whether legal representation is recommended.