Summer is a tough time for parents in all kinds of relationships. Whether they’re single, a couple or married, there is one thing that makes summer different than the rest of the year: The kids are out of school.
When your children are out of school and you have a custody schedule to follow, things can get tricky. Where you used to need to be there for a few hours at night or in the morning, you now need to have someone watch your children all day. If you cannot alter your work schedule to make time for them more, then you may find that the custody schedule and parenting plan that worked through the school year is not going to work for you in the summer.
What kinds of custody plans do working parents use in the summer?
Working parents use all kinds of different plans, depending on their schedules and the availability of help to support them. For example, if you work Monday through Thursday on long shifts, you may be able to take your children from Thursday through Sunday. If the other parent works from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Thursday through Monday, then most of that time your children will stay with you. In times where there is an overlap and both of you are working, you may consider using a daycare, babysitter or family member to watch your children.
Looking into summer camps and programs is another way to mitigate the challenges of summer vacation. Some parents use day camps as a way to keep their kids safe while they work. Others opt for camps where their children go away for a few weeks, so they are experiencing something new. Parents might opt to use vacation time around a summer camp’s schedule, so that someone is always available.
What works for you may not work for others. It’s important to start talking about your plans now, so that you can be prepared for your children’s break when it begins in May or June.