Newly single fathers sometime struggle with how to manage time spent with their children. Divorced parents want to maximize these visits and incorporate lots of fun and adventure, but they still need to take care of the practical obligations of everyday life.
A recently divorced father did the math and discovered that after eating, sleeping, and negotiating, he has a mere 31 hours of quality time to spend with his five- and eight-year-old children during weekend visits. Over time, he has learned how to make the most of his weekends with the kids.
The following are his tips for enjoyable and productive parental time:
- Do the chores ahead of time. Laundry, housekeeping, and grocery shopping are all part of our daily lives. While they need to get done, he recommends tending to them when the children are not around. He says to tackle your to-do list before the children arrive, when they are sleeping, or when they are watching television. After all, the best gift you can give to your children is your attention.
- Schedule weekend adventures ahead of time. Children want to have fun and make memories with you. They hardly want to drive around aimlessly looking for things to do. He suggests planning for the weekend so no moment is wasted. Your plan does not have to involve anything expensive or elaborate. It can be as simple as going to the park to shoot baskets or having a game night. Social media sites are a great resource for finding affordable kid-friendly events and activities.
- Plan meals for the weekend. At some point during the week, ask your child if there is a restaurant they would like to visit or meal you could make together. Cooking together is a great way to connect and catch up with your children, and it is usually more budget-friendly than eating out.
- Leave some room for downtime. Even though routines and schedules are healthy, so is a bit of time to just do nothing. You do not want your weekends to be hectic. Give children an hour or two relax and unwind. Include time for your children to read a book, play a video game, or make a craft. Downtime is healthy for both children and adults alike.
- Try not to be too hard on yourself. Fathers need to cut themselves some slack when it comes to making weekends worthwhile. What children want most of all is your love and attention. Be present, open, and loving, and everything else will fall into place.
Baltimore County Child Custody Lawyers at Huesman, Jones & Miles, LLC Protect the Rights of Divorced Fathers
Baltimore County child custody lawyers at Huesman, Jones & Miles, LLC work hard to protect your rights as a father and ensure you receive the parenting time you deserve. Whether you choose to resolve conflict through mediation or in family court, we advocate for you every step of the way. To learn more about how we can help you or to schedule a free consultation, call 443-589-0150 or contact us online. Located in Towson and Hunt Valley, Maryland, we serve clients throughout the state, including the areas of Baltimore, Baltimore County, Bel Air, Columbia, Westminster, Essex, Monkton, Sparks, Parkton, Pikesville, Carroll County, Harford County, and Howard County.