Step parenting challenges and rewards.
If you are a step parent and are helping your spouse raise children from a previous relationship, you know that step parenting has its challenges and its rewards.
A step parent has to work to develop and maintain a good relationship with the children as well as handle the details of raising them and taking care of them in their home.
There are many wonderful step parents who strive to connect with their spouses children.
These are the step parents that love the children as their own and treat them as they would treat their own children.
These step parents are a stable, positive force in the children's lives and their reward is love and admiration from their spouse and the children.
The last thing these step parents need is confusion over when and where to pick the children up, a constant battle over custody with the children's other parent, and the stress and complication of arranging a child custody and visitation schedule.
Dealing with the children's other parent can be one of the most challenging things about being a step parent.
Fortunately, Custody X Change can help.
How can Custody X Change help with our custody situation?
Custody X Change is custody software that can make your spouse's custody arrangements easier to handle.
This allows you to spend less time fighting with the other parent and worrying about the details of the schedule so you can spend more time focusing on your family.
Many people use Custody X Change to create their parenting plans in the process of their custody proceedings, but Custody X Change is a valuable tool that can be used until the children are grown.
Custody X Change lets you set up your parenting plan and custody agreement on your computer.
You can take your spouse's court ordered custody papers and enter all of the information from the custody agreement into the computer.
You can enter in the custody and visitation schedule (complete with a holiday schedule, vacation time, and special events) and the software will put it all into a calendar.
The calendar is printable, so you can provide a copy to your spouse's ex and there won't be any question as to who's turn it is. The calendar also shows the exchange times.
The calendar can be quite useful, but it is Custody X Changes tracking capabilities that make it unique. The software can keep track of the time share percentage each parent is supposed to have the children, as well as the actual time each parent had the children.
You can even use the journal to keep track of things that happened so you have a record of it.
The program prints all of this information out into professional documents that outline the complete custody and child visitation schedule (this is in addition to the calendar showing all of the times), the parenting provisions, and a time-share percentage report.
Custody X Change is a software tool to help you maintain a fair custody agreement.
Well, with Custody X Change you take a lot of the hassle out of the custody situation.
- This allows you to focus your energy on the children and helping to raise them.
- Your documents are organized and help avoid conflict since everything is clear.
- The software can help you track and document what actually happens.
- If child support payments need to be adjusted, you will have accurate records of time percentages to support your claim.
- If you ever need to return to court, you have a ready-made parenting plan and the reports to help you make the changes you want.
Custody X Change will prove to be an invaluable tool to help you and your spouse with the custody arrangements.
Let's look at some specific scenarios to see a few ways Custody X Change can help:
The ex was supposed to drop the kids of at 6:00 and it is 6:45 and they are "on their way".
You were supposed to pick up the kids at 8:00. You get there and the kids are still in their pajamas so you have to wait until they are dressed and ready before you can leave.
You make plans but the ex "forgot" whose turn it was to have the children so they are still at your house while your reservation has been cancelled and your table given to someone else. (Happy Anniversary.)
If you are tired of being treated as if your time is less valuable than the ex's, use Custody X Change.
The calendar is clear. It's easy to read. It can even be made into a PDF and sent to the ex's mobile device so there will be no excuse for excuses.
The custody and visitation schedule isn't a guideline. It's a court order. If your step children's other parent continually breaks that court order, he or she may straighten up when asked to do so or face going to court for a new one.
You go to pick up the children and no one is home.
The ex is mad (again) and using the children to get back at you and your spouse.
You try calling the police but they don't do anything because they "stay out of domestic matters". They just file a report, again.
Do not despair. You can use the tracking and journaling features of Custody X Change to document situations like these.
If you can establish that the ex has a pattern of defying the court order and have enough proof (get those police reports), you can go back into court and plead your case.
You can create another parenting plan and make a new custody and visitation schedule that you would like the court to adopt.
Judges do not like their orders to be disregarded and they do not like children to be kept from a parent because of the spitefulness of the other one. If your argument and evidence are compelling, you have a good chance of finding success in the courtroom.
Perhaps the other parent is really good about sticking to the schedule. He or she is there on time, every time.
The problem is that not enough rules were put into the original parenting plan and this parent pushes and flip-flops back and forth so much it causes conflict and drama. This parent might:
- Call you up screaming because the new shirt Billy wore over to your house was not returned even though you had previously verbally agreed to not be petty about the child's belongings.
- Sign Suzy up for ballet lessons without even consulting you and then demand you pay for half of the lessons (and the tutus) (and the slippers) and you just finished paying for the piano lessons you weren't asked about.
- Volunteer to coach the triplets' soccer team and then select one of "your" nights to hold practice. Yes, they are aware it is your night. They expect you to spend it watching them march your step children up and down the soccer field.
If the other parent is like this, you need to revise your parenting plan to include more rules so that order can be established and conflict can be avoided.
Modifying the parenting plan is easy. Simply use the information found in the custody order to create a parenting plan with Custody X Change.
Then you can add in all the rules and provisions you want such as rules pertaining to the children's belongings, how to handle optional expenses, and what to do what extra-curricular activities conflict with the custody schedule.
As long as you can get the ex to agree to the new terms of the agreement (and you can ask if he or she has anything to add) you should be able to go to court and have the judge approve it as an amendment to your previous child custody order.
If the other parent won't approve it, you can take it into court and explain to the judge why you feel it is important and in the best interest of the child for the changes to be made.
These are just a few of the ways that Custody X Change can help step parents. Ultimately, Custody X Change makes your custody situation easier to handle.
Try it and find out how it can help you.