Co-parenting is a challenge, no matter how long parents have been doing it or how amicable they are. There are simply some issues that parents disagree on or cannot anticipate.
For instance, if you co-parent, you likely never expected to be navigating this arrangement in the time of a global pandemic. And because of this, there are complications parents are struggling to resolve. However, just like other conflicts and obstacles, there are ways to overcome them.
Now that vaccinations are available for kids as young as five, California parents will need to decide whether and when to vaccinate their kids.
Your parenting agreement should address which parent should make medical decisions for a child. However, if you both have the right to do so and you cannot agree, you may need to go to court for a judge to determine which parent should make medical decisions.
In fact, reports indicate there has been a significant increase in custody-related vaccine litigation.
The rules on mask mandates, social distancing and other safety precautions to reduce the spread of COVID seem to be constantly changing. Parents can struggle to keep up with what they should and should not be doing to limit their child’s exposure.
Custody and visitation can complicate these efforts and trigger arguments. How strict should they be with having their child wear a mask? Are there any places they should not bring a child? What about traveling with the child?
Perhaps the most beneficial thing parents can do in these situations is be consistent. Doing so can be crucial in helping a child feel safe.
If you or your child must quarantine after getting COVID or having direct contact with someone with COVID, your schedule will likely need to change.
In-person visitation or custody exchanges may not be permittable during this period. Parents should discuss where a child will be safest; they should determine how to adjust their schedules and arrange virtual visits and communication.
Minimizing stress and conflict
Co-parenting in the time of COVID is undoubtedly tricky. Parents who can work together and seek legal resolutions quickly can alleviate the stress and conflict of these situations, which can be in everyone’s best interests.